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NEW UPDATES Asean Affairs  4 September 2014  

Malaysia ranks 20th in Global Competitiveness Report 2014-2015

Malaysia's ranking in the Global Competitiveness Report 2014-2015 has improved to 20th position out of 144 economies, ahead of developed economies such as Austria, Australia, France and South Korea.
Last year, the country was ranked at 24th position out of 148 countries.
Malaysia Productivity Corp director-general, Datuk Mohd Razali Hussain, said despite this being Malaysia's best position so far, the government would continue intensify efforts in the pillars of macroeconomic environment, labour market efficiency and technological readiness.
"Macroeconomic environment recorded a drop of six places to 44th position from 38th last year. Our area of concern is the government budget balance and general government debt.
"On technological readiness, Malaysia declined nine places to 60th position from 51st previously," he told a press conference after unveiling the country's ranking Tuesday.
Mohd Razali said MPC would like to propose the establishment of a task force to improve technological readiness in the country.
Among the initiatives needed to be intensified included mobile broadband subscriptions per 100 population, international Internet bandwidth and fixed broadband Internet subscriptions per 100 population.
On the labour market efficiency pillar, which improved to 19th position from 25th last year, Mohd Razali said the government would continue intensify initiatives to encourage the participation of women in the labour force.
In 2013, out of the whole female population in the country, 52.4 per cent were currently working.
"We will hold discussions with various ministries and agencies to improve Malaysia's position in the three pillars, as well as, hold more engagements with the business community," he said.
Meanwhile, Mohd Razali also proposed to set up a state-level competitiveness report within the next three to four years.
"From the ranking, it will motivate us to do better in areas that we are not good at," he added.
The Global Competitiveness Report, which is based on the Global Competitiveness Index, was introduced by the World Economic Forum in 2004. (

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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