Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Bad vibes

The economic challenges are increasing. The First Minister of Finance has stated in Parliament that the 3.5% GDP growth projection is no longer a viable target.

And, thus, it is coming to pass that reality has bitten the country's economic managers.

As if to further underline this candid albeit gloomy prognosis, we now have to watch the incidence of credit card defaults which are expected to escalate in the coming months.

To make matters even more dire, the SMI Association of Malaysia has reportedly indicated that about 1.35 million small and medium industries (SMIs) in the country will face an operational crisis due to dwindling revenue if the government does not raise domestic consumption in the next six months.

There are 1.5 million companies and businesses registered under the Registrar of Companies or Companies Commission of Malaysia, and of these 90% come under the micro- and small-industry categories.

It is estimated that of the 11 million workers in Malaysia, 56% are employed in SMIs and these SMIs are facing survival test in the next six months.


Unknown said...

A very timely post albeit depressing. Yet, if we were to analyze the given scenario in the light of current events, the outlook seems to be even more dismal.

Thanks for a well-researched post.


Anonymous said...

FINALLY the jokers in our government admitted that times are rough! (It took six months or so for their grey matter to register the signals!) But just look at the "actions" on the ground... with the prolonged UMNO's elections and power transition, "pesta politik" in Perak, Kedah and maybe Selangor... man! We got our priority DEAD WRONG! And who will pay at the end of the day? You and I, small men & women in the street, while our politicians with their "warchests" will be holidaying overseas, umrah whole Ramadhan long, etc... nasiblah, apa dikenang!

walla said...

Read yesterday that Singapore may retrench all its 300,000 foreign workers, two thirds of whom are Malaysians. MOHR has also said that 100,000 locals may be on the streets in months time outcome of the downturn. So we are looking at three hundred thousand Malaysians walking around with nothing to do. Those coming back from Singapore will land back on Johor whose Iskandar is still in development, not that they being factory production workers or ship repairers can lay bricks. And since one can't expect their layoff packages to last more than two months, by July it will be curtains.

All the kau-kau koffee can't kautim this one. It's not like the last few i remember. That time there were differential levels of trouble between continental geographies. Now even the basic foundation of international financing is kaput.

At least half of those retrenched workers may not go back to the countryside. They may want to just park themselves in the cities. This will add to urban poverty pressure. You can't grow anything in a city so there is no self-subsistence if there is also no job.

If we are wrong about this prognosis, better to be overly wrong in order to do more now so that a bigger buffer can be created than to be right only too little too late to make a difference later.

No amount of kau-kau koffe will kautim this krisis.

(unless taken between the deminimis and his kaki's).

walla said...

and this one is telling us something...


Starmandala said...

The book is fairly difficult to obtain (probably still available via Amazon.com) but it may just be the totally unexpected perspective we need to comprehend what's happening to the planet & the biosphere - from a galactic viewpoint. It's called The Mayan Factor: Path Beyond Technology (Bear & Co, first published 1986) & the author is a former art historian named Jose Arguelles. The gist of Arguelles's mind-boggling thesis is that the last 5,000+ years (3113 BC - 2012 AD) marked the passage of the Solar System through a "beam of density" during which technology was extruded as a byproduct of human intelligence operating with a left-brained bias favoring analysis & scientific materialism. However, technology is really just a scaffolding around the construction of a planetary consciousness which, once attained, will catapult the species onto a hitherto unknown level of awareness (which Arguelles calls Galactic Consciousness). This quantum jump is predicted to be occurring right now & will be fully apparent by 2012. All the pressing problems humans are facing are simply the birth pangs of a new civilization founded on sacred geometry & cosmic laws long forgotten or suppressed by power-wielders with limited agendas who understand only two prime imperatives: ACQUIRE & PROTECT. The new civilization will be entirely based on the principles of ATTUNE & HARMONIZE.

de minimis said...

bro walla

Many thanks. I will read it slowly. A long piece, that one.

bro Antares

As usual, I an enthralled by your input. The thesis sounds remarkably familiar, like Arthur C Clarke's Hugo Award-winning book, "Childhood's End". Such views make a compelling case on step-ladder evolutionary processes where each leap is predicated on tipping-point epochal events. I'll have to look it up. If it is out-of-print, maybe Barnes & Noble can help.

Pak Zawi said...

de minimis,
Singapore never denied such a possiblity a long time ago and took appropriate proactive stance and measures. In the final analysis they will overcome the hurdle first while we dawdle in our denial.
First of all curb overseas holidays by imposing higher exit tax to prevent massive fund outflows. Domestic tourism must be encouraged and promoted by making it extremely cheap just to keep hotels afloat an jobs secure.
The government must take the initiative by cancelling all overseas trip that are considered unnecessary.
As a measure of the last resort we may need a new captain and a set of new crews to keep this sinking ship afloat.