Prepare for 3 global trends, Zahid tells youths

Kelly Koh

MALACCA: The nation's youths will face three new emerging global trends, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said today, but assured that the National Transformation 2050 (TN50) is being put in place to address these issues.

He said Malaysian youths should be prepared to face these challenges by having the right skills and mindset.

The first trend, he said was the shrinking working-age population in wealthy countries and growing working-age population in poorer nations.

"Africa, with fertility rates that double the rest of the world and parts of Asia, is on course for their working-age populations to soar.

"This can lead to economic progress or disaster depending on how well their governments and societies ramp up investment in education infrastructure and other key sectors," he said at the opening ceremony of Asia Urban Youth Assembly (AUYA), in conjunction with the 17th Convention of Malacca Twin Cities Convention 2017 today.

Present were Deputy Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique, Malacca Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron and Malacca Historical City Council mayor Datuk Zainal Hussin.

The second and third global trends, Zahid said were the shifting global economy, followed by climate change and health issues.

"Economies worldwide will shift significantly in the near future. Wealthy economies will try to halt recent declines in economic growth and maintain lifestyles even as their working-age populations shrink," Zahid said.

On threats of global climate change, Zahid said this would require a lot of attention as "a range of global hazards pose imminent and long-term threats that will require collective action to address and cooperation becomes harder."

He added that acknowledging these challenges, the government has embarked on the ambitious plan to transform the nation by 2050.

"TN50 is the first of its kind of a bottom-up consultation process that will take into consideration the demands and aspirations of every sector of the community." he said.