Malaysia’s big financial dream has an English problem, says report

  • After Karpal’s death, DAP rep tells AG to drop bid for jail time
    After Karpal’s death, DAP rep tells AG to drop bid for jail time

    SHAH ALAM, April 17 — The Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) should symbolically withdraw its recent bid for custodial sentence against late DAP veteran Karpal Singh after his death today,  state... …

  • Best leads for MH370 search will be exhausted in about a week, says Abbott
    Best leads for MH370 search will be exhausted in about a week, says Abbott

    The best leads in the underwater search for Malaysia Airlines flight 370 will be exhausted in about a week, Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), as search efforts continue in the Indian Ocean. Abbott said authorities would need to rethink their approach if the mini-submarine,... …

  • Opposition MPs censure Karpal’s critics for insensitive remarks
    Opposition MPs censure Karpal’s critics for insensitive remarks

    Pakatan Rakyat MPs have condemned remarks by certain critics of the late Karpal Singh, saying their insensitive remarks and stupid logic have no place in a modern educated society like Malaysia. On former Perkasa deputy president Zulkifli Noordin's comment that Allah had killed off Karpal who had rejected the implementation of hudud laws in... …

  • Karpal makes last journey home to Penang
    Karpal makes last journey home to Penang

    Amid tears of sorrow, a coffin bearing Karpal Singh's remains was loaded onto a van for his final journey back to Penang today. The 73-year-old, popularly known as the Tiger of Jelutong, died early this morning after the Toyota Alphard he was in collided with a five-tonne Mitsubishi Canter. Karpal's remains had been brought to the Raja... …

  • Anwar pays tribute to defender of human rights
    Anwar pays tribute to defender of human rights

    Malaysia has lost a selfless, courageous and noble defender of  fundamental liberties, said opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in a tribute to his political comrade and lawyer Karpal Singh, who died in an accident this morning. Anwar, who found out about Karpal's passing at 3am today, said that Malaysia had lost an illustrious hero and... …

  • Nurul Izzah’s husband appoints relative as member of reconciliation committee
    Nurul Izzah’s husband appoints relative as member of reconciliation committee

    Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar's husband, Raja Ahmad Shahrir Iskandar Raja Salim, has appointed his relative as a member of a reconciliation committee for the couple's ongoing divorce case, The Star Online reported today. According to the report, Raja Ahmad Shahrir proposed Mohd Fauzi Mustaffa for the position today. The report said Raja... …

Malaysia's plans of turning Kuala Lumpur into a major financial centre which can rival the likes of London, New York, Singapore and Hong Kong will remain a pipe dream if it does not address the challenges associated with the supply of skilled human capital.

A report published on online portal The Conversation said that Malaysia's poor scores in assessments by international students, declining language capabilities and persistent concerns over the employability of graduates did not augur well for its ambitious plans.

“The government may be able to build world-class facilities in Kuala Lumpur and attract international companies to operate in the new district by offering tax breaks and other incentives.

“However, without a supply of educated, English-speaking workers, hopes of challenging regional neighbours in Hong Kong and Singapore will remain a dream,” said the report prepared by the University of Nottingham Malaysia's Christine Ennew and Nafis Alam.

It said that Malaysia has announced bold plans to transform Kuala Lumpur into a major financial centre to raise the capital's profile and spark greater international trade and investment.

The report also referred to the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX), a newly proposed financial district covering 70 acres and featuring 11 new buildings with 25 floors or more, dubbed the "Asia's Canary Wharf".

Putrajaya believes the TRX is the foundation on which Malaysia will be able to compete with regional financial superpowers such as Singapore and Hong Kong.

On this, The Conversation asked: Can a new upstart join the likes of London, New York and Tokyo as a global financial superpower?”

The Global Financial Centres Index (GFCI), a research-informed survey on the competitiveness of a range of cities worldwide, highlighted the challenge that awaits emerging centres such as Kuala Lumpur.

In its most recent rankings, Kuala Lumpur dropped a place to 22nd globally, but was still in Asia's Top 10 list.

London and New York are already way ahead of the pack, Singapore and Hong Kong are in strong positions, and Shanghai and Shenzhen have already shown their respective dynamism. Gaining ground on the superpowers will be tough for Malaysia.

The GFCI also said that the TRX may be a step too far unless it adopts a niche approach and builds on Malaysia's established strength in the rapidly growing Islamic financial marketplace.

“It is Islamic finance which gives Malaysia the advantage over neighbouring financial centres and those mapping out the country's future would be wise to take note.”

The Conversation agreed with the GFCI, saying: “If Malaysia is to join the top flight of international financial centres, it must leverage its status as an established Islamic finance hub.”

Bank Negara has revealed that Malaysia's Islamic banking assets total US168.4 billion (RM555.7 billion), which is a quarter of its banking system. This accounts for over 10% of the world's total Islamic banking assets.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is banking on the TRX to be a dedicated international financial hub, promoting Kuala Lumpur as a new nucleus of global economic growth.

The project is seen as crucial to Najib's economic plans, creating the critical mass needed to significantly boost productivity and achieve a developed nation status by 2020. – November 15, 2013.

Follow @YahooMalaysia on LINE for daily news updates.

Comments on Yahoo pages are subject to our link to Comments Guidelines. You are responsible for any content that you post. Yahoo is not responsible or liable in any way for comments posted by its users. Yahoo does not in any way endorse or support comments made by its users.

  • ‘Huge’ Hindu, Buddhist statues against Islam, ex-judge says The Malay Mail Online
    ‘Huge’ Hindu, Buddhist statues against Islam, ex-judge says

    KUALA LUMPUR, April 16 — The “huge” statues at a Hindu temple in Batu Caves and Buddhist temple in Penang are an affront to Islam as the religion forbids idolatry, a retired Court of Appeals judge... …

  • My dad was in KL to see me, says Gobind The Malaysian Insider
    My dad was in KL to see me, says Gobind

    Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh, who died in an accident early this morning, was in Kuala Lumpur to visit his son Gobind Singh Deo who was ill. A distraught Gobind said he was informed of the accident at 2.15am today, and he and his wife rushed to the scene where he saw his father's mangled car and his father's body. "My brother Ramkarpal was... …

  • Wreck hunter confident MH370 crash site found, says Aussie paper The Malaysian Insider
    Wreck hunter confident MH370 crash site found, says Aussie paper

    A wreck hunter is confident that the search teams had pinpointed the crash site of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 and believes that the black boxes will be located soon, the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) reports. David Mearns, director of Blue Water Recoveries told the ABC's 7.30 programme yesterday, he was confident that, because of their... …