Most ‘controversial’ Chinese projects not really controversial, says UM economist

A. Ruban
Professor Edmund Terence Gomez said most of these projects sanctioned by the previous BN government were, in fact, beneficial and could boost the economy. ― Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 17 — The Pakatan Harapan (PH) government red flagged projects like the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) and Penang undersea tunnel because of the link local private companies had with the previous Barisan Nasional (BN) administration, an economist told a forum today.

Professor Edmund Terence Gomez from the economics and administration faculty of Universiti Malaya said most of these projects sanctioned by the previous BN government were, in fact, beneficial and could boost the economy.

“The problem of these projects are that they are clouded with political controversies and if you remove that, you will see the strong flow of opportunity and business growth for the people here,” he said when speaking at the Malaysia-China Smart Silk Road Forum.

Lau Zheng Zhou, a senior director at Centre for Public Policy Studies (CPPS), said Chinese projects in Malaysia should be viewed as a boost in helping the nation prepare for Industry 4.0.

“Chinese companies are not here to steal our businesses, but here to help us go up.

“If you look at Forest City, it is so advanced there and we should learn from their technology there to apply in other projects within the manufacturing sector,” he said, referring to a property project in Johor.

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