Al-Sultan Abdullah to govt: Repair the economy, double the efforts

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KUALA LUMPUR: The newly-formed government must double its efforts and resolve all issues immediately so the country and its people can move on from the current Covid-19 pandemic, Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah said.

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The King at the same time also expressed confidence that the new government led by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob would be able to prove its performance within the first 100 days.

To ensure a better future, Al-Sultan Abdullah also reminded all quarters to practice the democracy of discussions (demokrasi bermusyawarah) in finding solutions to all problems.

“I welcome the government’s openness in providing opportunities to various parties including Members of Parliament to be involved in national governance.

“I also welcome and appreciate all efforts toward realising the new approach of bipartisan cooperation between all quarters, which will shape a new political landscape and bring changes to the country’s administration system.

“This is the kind of maturity that is craved for by all my people. Take this advice from an old Malay proverb: ‘Biduk lalu, kiambang bertaut’ (two disputing parties will be reconciled when the agitator has been eliminated.)

“Only through unity, agreement, and togetherness as one ‘Malaysian Family’ can we weather the various challenges and trials we will encounter,” he said when officiating the opening of the First Meeting of the Fourth Term of the 14th Parliament today.

The King said Malaysia is on the right track to resolving Covid-19 issues through the formation of the National Recovery Council (NRC), implementation of the Covid-19 National Immunisation Programme (NIP) as well as financial assistance and economic stimulus packages for the people.

Al-Sultan Abdullah expressed appreciation towards the government’s efforts in implementing various strategies which are now reflected in the high number of Covid-19 recovery cases nationwide.

“Majority of new cases are in Categories 1 and 2. In fact, our country is among those with the fastest vaccination rate in the world.

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“Despite this success, I urge for us not to be distracted and easily satisfied. Efforts must be continued especially with the emergence of new Covid-19 variants,” he said.

With this in mind, the King said the “whole-of-society” strategy needs to be ramped up through effective communication narratives, adding that the government’s Agenda Nasional Malaysia Sihat (ANMS) is very much welcomed in educating the public to live with the Covid-19 virus.

At the same time, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong also urged the government to streamline policies involving the entry and issuance of visas to foreigners so the transmission of new variants can be controlled.

The monarch also highlighted the country’s total trade which has soared to RM1 trillion in the first six months of 2021, adding that investments in all sectors appeared to have increased by nearly 70 per cent.

“This clearly gives a positive image that Malaysia is a very competitive country, business-friendly and also a strategic location for domestic and international investors.

“As a whole, the implementation of stimulus packages and the reopening of the economy was very well-diversified, showing trends of economic recovery.”

The King also noted the role of government aids in assisting those affected, saying such measures to distribute cash hand-outs had benefited 10 million recipients from the B40 and M40 groups in the second half of 2021.

Although the present economy is battered by the Covid-19 pandemic, the King is optimistic that it will show signs of recovery and this, he said, would provide the much-needed confidence to stakeholders and investors.

“Therefore, the government must wisely expedite economic recovery through the enactment of business and investment-friendly policies to spur the nation’s competitiveness,” he said. -NST