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Malaysia turns to technology in bid to reach high-income status by 2020
Guardian ^ | 06/27/2013 | Cleo Pearson

Posted on 06/26/2013 7:53:24 PM PDT by TexGrill

Having established itself as an Asian tiger, Malaysia is now banking on technology to achieve its ambitious goal of attaining high-income status by 2020.

Malaysia wants to raise GDP per capita to $12,476 (about £8,000) by 2020, in line with the World Bank's high-income status. But with GDP of $9,977 in 2011, there is still a way to go. While the goal may not seem outlandish, the struggle lies in overcoming the "middle-income trap". As countries move up the economic ladder, they lose their comparative advantage of cheap, labour-intensive manufacture. At the same time, they lack the skill levels and infrastructure to compete with higher-level countries.

The Malaysian government's answer is an economic transformation programme, covering 12 areas ranging from agriculture to tourism, reforms in areas from human capital development to inequality reduction, and a government transformation programme, partly aimed at lowering crime and improving public transport.

Hi-tech is a priority in Malaysia's economic transformation, explains Datuk Ghazali, chief executive of the government's Multimedia Development Corporation, who was in London this month to meet potential investors. Set up in 1996, the corporation oversees Malaysia's information, communications and technology (ICT) development initiative.

"We can't compete with China and we don't want to compete with India on call centres," said Ghazali. "We are more interested in high-end engineering research and development. DHL, for example, has set up R&D facilities here and in Prague."

ICT constitutes 10.5% of GDP in Malaysia, and the goal is to boost it to 17% by 2020. The focus on technology starts at school. Primary and secondary schools are being equipped with wireless and netbook devices; the government wants a ratio of one device for every five students by next year.

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TOPICS: Business/Economy; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: malaysiaeconomy
Global business tip
1 posted on 06/26/2013 7:53:25 PM PDT by TexGrill
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To: TexGrill

What, no social justice or income redistribution?
Sounds like they are lacking in democrats.

2 posted on 06/26/2013 10:25:59 PM PDT by Cold Heart
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