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Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Issues in Malay Economics

MALAY ECONOMICS.

Many weeks ago Dato Samy Vellu, leader of the MIC raised the ire of Malays. He stated that Tun Dr Mahathir did not do much for the Indians. Many of us will remember, this Sentul chap is the leader of the MIC far longer than Tun Mahathir was the president of UMNO.

The ultimate responsibility of championing the cause of Malaysia Indians lies with Dato Samy vellu. If he means not taking care of Indians, a failure to create 1000 Ananda Krishnans, then that mendacious accusation can be tolerated initially but must debated upon. Malays of course would have wished TUn Mahathir create 1000 more Syed Bukharis. As for Malaysian Indians, let them be the judge on Samy Vellu.

On the other hand, Samy Vellu’s knee jerk response and hurtful missives on Tun Mahathir must not go unanswered. Where do we turn to seek our answers? We must go look up facts and figures.

The most common and universally understood measure of economic wellbeing is per capita income. Total income of the various races are counted and divided by their respective population. The figures for 2004, are shown in the table below.

MEAN MONTHLY INCOME(RM) OF VARIOUS RACES AND GINI COEFFICIENTS.


(2)

(3)

(4)

(5)

race

1999

2004

1999

2004

Malays

1984

2711

0.433

0.452

Chinese

3456

4437

0.434

0.446

Indians

2702

3456

0.413

0.425

Malaysian

2472

3249

0.452

0.462

Urban income

3103

3956

0.432

0.444

Rural income

1718

1875

0.421

0.397

Source: dept. of statistics 1999/2004.

Columns 2 and 3 measure the mean monthly income of the various races in Malaysia. Columns 4 and 5 measure the GINI coefficient index. For the GINI number, figures tending to 0 are better while those tending to 1 signifies more unequal income distribution.

In 1999 when the NEP was supposed to end, Malay income remained the lowest. It was only RM1984 compared to the Chinese at RM3456 and Indian at RM2472. The mean income of the Malay was 57% of that of a Chinese and 73% of an Indian in 1999. Or to put it more succinctly, for every RM1 earned by a Chinese and Indian, the Malay earns only 57sen and 73sen only. How Apoo?

The rate of increase in mean monthly income were 37% for the Malays and 28% for Chinese and Indians respectively. The rate of increase registered by Malays indicate some degree of effectiveness in the affirmative policies associated with NEP. If they do not show any improvement, then that would suggest a total failure of NEP policies. When figures for the Chinese and Indians are measured against the national mean of 31%, at first sight they showed slight underachievement. Do the Malay figures suggest contentment for the Malays? On closer inspection much of the increase in mean incomes for Malays accrue to urban dwellers.

The majority of Malays live in rural areas. They are engaged mainly in traditional economic vocations. The rate of increase in rural income was only 9% using the 2004/1999 figures. This suggest that all those living in urban areas enjoyed the positive effects of NEP more than those staying in rural areas. And most of these folks are Malays. How again Apoo?

Dato Samy Vellu- Dei Tambhy- let’s look at the figures for hardcore poor. This measure the income of people against a specified income level. For example if the poverty line income is slated at RM 600, those whose income fall below this line, are considered hardcore poor. Ok so far?

HOUSEHOLD INCOME SURVEY, 2004. INCIDENCE OF POVERTY & HARDCORE POVERTY(%), EPU

POVERTY

MALAY

CHINESE

INDIANS

HARDCORE POVERTY

1.9

0.1

0.3

Urban poverty

0.7

Neg.

0.2

rural

3.3

0.3

0.5

OVERALL POVERTY

8.3

0.6

2.9

urban

4.6

0.4

2.4

Rural

13.4

2.3

5.4

The above figures are indicative of the incidence of poverty between the main races in Malaysia. In terms of urban incidence of poverty, the Malays are the worse affected. In terms of rural incidence of poverty, it cannot be gainsaid which ethic group is the worse lot. In terms of overall incidence, the figure for the Indian community is 2.9% while that of their Malay brothers is 8.3%. The Malays in rural areas suffer most as shown by the incidence percentage of 13.4% compared to the Indian at 5.4%.

But Malays do not come out brandishing krises to go after Tun Mahathir do they? Only Hishamudin does and it has done him in.

Therefore , Apoo before you say anything unSentulike, please remember;

IN ALIO PEDICULUM, IN TE RICINUM NON VIDES- you see a louse on someone else, but not a tick on yourself.

1 comments:

jebatmustdie 8 July 2008 at 10:23  

Salam,

All I can say is, Melayu terpinggir di 'kepuk' sendiri.

Thank you.

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