PEOPLE have come to call Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s economic vision as Najibnomics. Three words stand out in Najib’s blog post on his economic vision: prosperity, sustainability and inclusivity. They are the three pillars on which stands his vision. These three words have defined his premiership, not only in terms of his economic policies but even beyond. Najibnomics is one man’s way of seeing the future of Malaysia. Seeing by itself is not enough; it requires steering and getting others going on the road to the defined future. Najib is doing just that. Consider the National Transformation Programme (NTP). Just one year into his premiership, Najib launched the NTP as a manifestation of his ambition for Malaysia.
NTP, together with the Economic Transformation Programe (ETP), is designed to propel Malaysia towards a developed nation status in 2020. Najib’s entry into politics may have been abrupt and unplanned, as he himself put it in his blog, but the choice of 2020 as a target year for Malaysia to achieve developed-nation status is in no way accidental; it is a reflection of the sharpness of his vision. For long we were living a life of a commodity-dominated nation, our household income largely following the swing of the pendulum as the commodity prices followed the mood swings of the market. Vacillation was a word we were very used to. Added to this, we were stuck in the middle-income trap.
Najibnomics’ clever twist of the NTP is to make the private sector drive the achievement of the high-income target by attracting US$444 billion in investments, which will create 3.3 million jobs, many of which are high-income jobs. In the world of Najibnomics, the private sector is a major engine of economic growth. And rightly so. The ideal role for the government is to create an environment that is conducive for a stronger socio-economic growth. Come 2020, we shall enjoy a Gross National Income (GNI) per capita of US$15,000, which is the entry point of high-income nation status. And, 30 years later, when Transformasi Nasional 2050 (TN50) comes to fruition, God willing, Malaysia would be seated at the table where the world’s top 20 nations would be. With another three years left for Malaysia to be granted a developed-nation status, the NTP is already delivering results across the country.
Najibonomics is about sustainability and inclusivity too. The idea is to broaden the economic pie and make it last. In 2020, Malaysia’s population is projected to be close to 33 million, and, in 2050 the number is estimated to grow to about 41 million. Not wanting to leave any Malaysians untouched, especially those in the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia and across the South China Sea in Sabah and Sarawak, Najibonomics’ NTP promises to tread where others have been hesitant to. Najibnomics is as much about allocation of resources as it is about meeting social needs such as quality of life, cost of living, safety and security of Malaysians of all hues. Vacillation was the word for the 1970s; now Najibnomics brings to us three: prosperity, sustainability and inclusivity.