REPORT: 2018 Budget To Focus On Domestic Investment, Rakyat's Wellbeing & Inclusivity
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 27 (Bernama) -- The 2018 Budget will focus on stimulating domestic investment while simultaneously focusing on developing the future generation, enhancing the wellbeing of the rakyat and ensuring inclusivity, the Ministry of Finance said.
It said given the external environment coupled with developments in the domestic economy, the government will create new frontiers of opportunity for the rakyat and the business community.
"In essence, these initiatives will further strengthen the nation's economic fundamentals and lay the foundation for National Transformation 2050 (TN50) to position Malaysia among the top 20 economies in 2050," it said in the Economic Report 2017/2018 released today.
Towards achieving these milestone, the country must leverage on several opportunities and overcome several challenges.
"Over the longer-term, structural adjustments are necessary to realign policies with new realities of the global economy," it said.
Against this backdrop, the challenge is for Malaysia to develop new strategies to further enhance the resilience of the domestic economy in coping with the changing landscape.
The ministry said in the 2018 Budget, the government would focus on domestic investment to stimulate growth and accelerate balanced development across the nation apart from promoting the country as the destination of choice for foreign investment and an ideal gateway to ASEAN.
It said efforts would also be undertaken to attract significant investment in new growth areas such as digital economy, medical tourism, halal industry, and maintenance, repair and overhaul activity.
"At the same time, the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will be incentivised to adopt Industrial Revolution 4.0 to elevate the industries' efficiency, productivity, return on investment, technology convergence and megatrends," it said.
It said to sustain the role of the service as the key driver of growth, the government would accelerate the implementation of the Services Sector Blueprint, and the Logistics and Trade Facilitation Masterplan.
"To facilitate the strategic development of Malaysia's healthcare travel industry and to raise the country's profile as a globally preferred destination for world-class healthcare services, more new hospitals will be developed and existing ones upgraded," it said.
At the same time, an efficient financing business model, with sufficient flexibility to adapt to market needs and opportunities, is central for optimal allocation of capital to new growth areas particularly for entrepreneurship to flourish in the country.
"In this respect, the budget will introduce measures to create a vibrant venture capital industry in the country," it said.
While acknowledging the importance of the vibrant capital economy, the government remained steadfast in promoting the people economy that enables all segments of the society to benefit from the wealth of the nation.
"The 2018 Budget's focus is on rural and urban development, including upgrading state and federal roads and bridges," it said.
It said allocation would also be provided to empower women and Bumiputera including Orang Asli and natives of Sabah and Sarawak.
"The Bumiputera agenda will be further enhanced to strengthen their participation in economic activities," it said.
It said efforts would also be intensified to shift the value-cost frontier through National Blue Ocean Strategy to complement the government's fiscal consolidation path.
"This entails rapid execution of high-impact programmes and projects at lower cost," it added.