Beyond economics: Najib unveils new Bumiputera transformation initiatives

LAILI ISMAIL and SOO WERN JUN

KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today announced a new initiative, Transformasi Kesejahteraan Bumiputera (TKB) as an extension to strengthen the newly-launched Bumiputera Economic Transformation Roadmap (BETR) 2.0.

Speaking at the launch of BETR 2.0, he said the initiative would prepare the Bumiputera community and entrepreneurs to be competitive by global standards.

"As a new phase to the Bumiputera agenda empowerment, TKB will produce Bumiputera communities and entrepreneurs who are focused, viable, creative, innovative and ready to compete globally.

"It will be more inclusive and holistic, as previously it was more focused on economic aspects.

"The new initiative will include education, health, socio-cultural including a dynamic and conducive environment that will uplift Bumiputera standards," he said.

Any policy related to the Bumiputera agenda, Najib said, must be all-encompassing and aligned with the main pillars of the National Transformation Policy.

He described BETR 2.0 as a step to empower the Bumiputera agenda in line with the government's aspiration to become a RM2 trillion economy within seven to eight years.

He said the Bumiputera community is in a better position than before.

"The Bumiputera have always been misunderstood and linked to expensive contracts or unsatisfactory performance.

"But today, we are proud that their quality and delivery of work meet high standards that are comparable to non-Bumiputera and international companies.

"Bumiputera participation through the Carve Out and Compete initiative reached 47.2 pc or RM54.24 billion," he said, adding that the initiative had offered opportunities for Bumiputera companies to be involved in mega projects based on merit.

Present were Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan, Bumiputera Agenda Steering Unit (Teraju) chief executive officer Datuk Husni Salleh as well as cabinet ministers.