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No TPPA, No High-Income Status For Malaysia

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KANGAR – Malaysia will miss out on many opportunities to narrow the development gap and even not achieve its goal to become a high-income nation if it rejects the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said via the pact, there was every possibility that additional foreign investments of between US$136 billion and US$239 billion would flow into the country and 2,000 job opportunities would also be created in the process by 2017.

“These investments will be able to offer greater business and market opportunities. Malaysia’s small market is not enough for businesses to expand as such we must receive and accept changes in order to grow and expand.

“The government is of the strong opinion that the TPPA will be a stepping stone for Malaysia to greater heights and it will directly benefit the people and the country,” he said during a state-level briefing on TPPA here last night.

Explaining further, Mustapa said Malaysia would also lose out on abundant business and investment opportunities if the country choses to opt out of the TPPA.

“Then, Singapore and Vietnam, which will ratify the agreement will both enjoy tremendous growth as both countries will draw abundant foreign interest.

“This could result in Malaysia gradually being left behind and the development gap between all three countries will widen as the TPPA will bring many benefits to countries participating in it especially in terms of more market access and state-of-the art technology,” he said.

He also reminded the people to scrutinise and weigh all information on the TPPA and reject assumptions that are not based on facts aimed at confusing the people.

“We should not be influenced by assumptions that we (Malaysia) will be controlled by the United States. Many other countries are joining the pact like Australia, Brunei, Canada, Japan, Singapore and New Zealand which can determine their own direction despite being a party to pact.

“Infact, the TPPA will not come into force immediately. We will have six months to evaluate the impact of its implementation and if it is not favourable, we can opt out without any condition,” he said.

Mustapa said Malaysia was not being pressured by any party to join the TPPA and the government has considered its impact and have ensured the sovereign rights of the Federal Constitution and state government are safeguarded. – BERNAMA

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