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Thursday, November 8, 2007

Corridor development generates overall economy

NST (7/11/2007): Datuk Seri Dr Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said the development corridor concept would not only generate a more comprehensive and widespread economic development but also contribute towards efforts at eradicating poverty.

The Prime Minister said the philosophy behind the development corridors was that no one should be left out of the economic mainstream.

“Economic sectors and geographical regions that are currently lagging behind will be developed quickly, without neglecting any particular sector or area,” said Abdullah in his policy speech as Umno president at the Umno General Assembly 2007 today.

He said that the development of economic corridors would generate additional income and new sources of wealth which would be harvested.

“All these corridors are aimed at improving the lives of the people by ensuring that they taste the fruits of success,” he said.
Abdullah said the economic corridors were part of the government’s national agenda and did not take into account party politics.

“It should be seen as a larger plan to vault every Malaysian, especially the Malays, to greater prosperity, and it also proves the determination of the Barisan Nasional government to develop the entire nation for the well-being of the people,” he said.

A class of Malay managers capable of successfully running businesses had emerged, the Prime Minister said.

As such, he said, the presumption that the Iskandar Development Region in Johor would harm the Malays with the entry of foreign investors was an insult to the ability of the Malays to compete on the global stage.

“We will never sacrifice the interest of Malaysians and the Malays. The investment that we will attract from all over the world will accelerate our economic growth and the benefits will be enjoyed by all,” he said.

Abdullah said the government would provide the necessary facilitation and encouragement to enable all Malays who wished to compete in these corridors the ability to do so.

These development corridors would also give a new face and a fresh approach to agriculture in Malaysia through structural changes, especially to allow Malay participation in the supply chain.

He said the agricultural sector would now involve much more than harvesting primary products which was labour and time intensive, but yielding low value returns.

“Today, the supply chain is not yet controlled by the Malays, much less Malay farmers,” he said.

The Prime Minister said the government would work towards effecting a transformation from traditional to modern agriculture which, through the use of biotechnology and the information and communications technology (ICT), would be more productive and profitable.


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