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Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak

PUTRAJAYA – French carmaker, Peugeot, is in serious talks with Malaysia’s Proton Holdings Bhd on possible partnership, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

“It is not concluded yet but that’s something which could be a possibility,” Najib said at a joint press conference with visiting French President Francois Hollande at Perdana Putra here today.

The state visit of Hollande, who arrived in Malaysia yesterday, is part of the president’s first visit to ASEAN which would include Singapore and Indonesia.

In February, it was reported that Peugeot has submitted a bid to buy a stake in Proton.

Najib, who is also Finance Minister, said both leaders also held talks on bilateral trade investment between both countries, which stood at RM15.2 billion and France was the 18th largest trade partner for Malaysia.

“Trade is very much in favour of France because of the large amount of capital equipment that Malaysia purchases yearly like aeroplanes, ships and defence- and security-related equipment,” he said.

Najib said Malaysia was aware that French companies played a big part and contributions with 60,000 Malaysians employed in French-based companies in Malaysia such as STMicroelectronics, Lafarge and Technip.

On the importance of the palm oil industry, Najib thanked Hollande for not agreeing to the Bill to tax Malaysian palm oil and said this was an encouragement to Malaysia.

Najib said he and Hollande also talked about the importance of palm oil industry, as over 600,000 people depended on it, saying that palm oil was developed on sustainable basis in Malaysia.

“And we (Malaysia) will make sure that it is environmentally-friendly and ensure a balanced development in this country because many people depend on palm oil as a source of livelihood.

“We are also developing our Malaysian standards, and we hope they can be accepted by European Union or France … that is a great help to us,” he added.

Last year, Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister, Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong, was quoted as saying that Malaysia, a major palm oil producer, would try and persuade France not to increase the duties on Malaysian palm oil which currently attracted 21 per cent import tax.

Najib said the bilateral meeting also discussed cooperation in tourism and human capital development and international and regional issues.

“All in all, it has been a productive discussion with Hollande and I’m confident with his visit will definitely strengthen and deepen our already close ties,” he said. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the 1Malaysia Public Servants Housing (PPA1M) projects were not only aimed at providing accommodation but also at creating wealth.

Najib who is also Finance Minister, said the government undertook the measure of building the PPA1M housing for personal and family wellbeing with the house ownership offered to public servants.

He said as the pillar of the government’s administrative machinery, public servants were an important target group, not only in upholding and implementing government policies but also as a group which played a major role and contributed a lot to national development.

“It is very appropriate for public servants to get a comfortable home and enjoy increase in their property or asset value as security for the rest of their lives,” Najib said at the handing of keys to the Larai PPA1M units in Precinct 6, here, today.

Also present were Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa, Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Tan Sri Noh Omar, and Putrajaya Corporation (PPj) president Datuk Seri Hasim Ismail.

Najib said the provision of affordable homes was a main agenda of the government with the cooperation of the private sector, and among the schemes were the 1Malaysia People’s Housing (PR1MA), People-Friendly Homes, Federal Territories Housing Policy (RUMAWIP), and Felda, Felcra and Risda second generation homes.

He said the government targeted the construction of 126,000 PPA1M units for public servants throughout the country and so far, almost 3,500 units had been completed and occupied, while the balance were being built.

“God willing, by 2020, all the units targeted will be completed…this is a meaningful milestone towards fulfilling the national housing agenda.”

Najib said for each PPA1M unit built, the subsidy provided by the government was RM25,000 to RM38,000, depending on the size of the house.

He cited a house of 1,200 sq ft in size with the sale price of RM260,000 and the government subsidy of RM30,000 provided, while for a house of 1,500 sq ft, the sale price is RM300,000 and the subsidy at RM38,000.

“I’ve been made to understand that the Larai PPA1M project is the biggest we have implemented so far. The Palma PPA1M project in Precinct 11 and the Selasih PPA1M in Precinct 17 have also been completed,” he said.

In a statement, PPj said the Larai PPA1M project comprised 1,680 units, with 536 of the units measuring 1,000 sq ft, out of which 16 units were for the disabled, 748 units measuring 1,200 sq ft, and 380 units of 1,500 sq ft in size.- BERNAMA

PM, Wife Grateful Abu Sayyaf Kidnap Victims Safe

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the release of Malaysian nationals kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf terror group was made with the cooperation between the Malaysian and the Philippine governments.

He said continuous efforts by the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM), the Foreign Ministry and other quarters, including 1Malaysia Putra Club (KP1M) had yielded results with the return of two of the kidnap victims last night.

“We are grateful because two Malaysian nationals who were kidnapped for eight months are now back in the country and have been reunited with their family members today. Thank you to all those involved in the rescue efforts.

“As for three other Malaysian nationals still there, we are working with all quarters, including the Philippine government, to bring them home. Hope they will be patient,” Najib told this reporters at his residence at Jalan Duta Monday.

Two of the five Malaysian nationals who were kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf terrorists in the Philippines in July last year were rescued by Filipino security forces in an operation in the south of the republic last Thursday.

The two kidnap victims – Tayudin Anjut, 46, and Abdul Rahim Summas, 63 –arrived at the KL International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang last night and were brought to the Prime Minister’s residence, where they were also reunited with their families about 8 am today.

The Prime Minister’s wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, was also present at the meeting, during which they two kidnap victims related their ordeal, including the bad treatment by their kidnappers. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today announced that a stadium would be built for the Royal Malaysia Police at the Police Training Centre (PULAPOL) here.

He said the stadium, the first for RMP, would have a seating capacity of 35,000 people and was for improving the standard of RMP’s football team.

The stadium will be built via a land swap with the Federal Reserve Unit’s site at PULAPOL.

“I hope the RMP football team will be more successful in future with the availability of the stadium,” he said when launching the 210th Police Day celebration at PULAPOL.

Najib also announced the construction of a new centre for RMP’s Special Actions Unit (UTK) costing RM100 million in Semenyih, Selangor. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today expressed sadness that some irresponsible groups tried to belittle the role and contribution of the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) and tarnished the image of the force with various slanders and untruths.

He said such actions were improper and immoral, especially if they were made based on certain objectives influenced by narrow political ideology.

“This is because no one can deny that history had shown that the deeds and contributions of the PDRM to the people and country were immense,” he said when officiating the 210th Police Day Memorial Parade 2017 at PULAPOL (Police Training Centre), here.

Also present were his wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, Deputy Prime Minister cum Home Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar.

Najib also touched on the sacrifices of the police personnel from the past until now who were ready to sacrifice their lives to uphold peace and order in the country.

He said the attack by a group of 185 communist terrorists on the Bukit Kepong Police Station in 1950, which killed 25 police personnel, their wives and children, as well as local villagers, and the bloody incident in Lahad Datu in 2013, were among sacrifices made by members of the police and security forces.

“How can we forget the tragedy (Lahad Datu incident) which saw how women had lost their husbands, children who lost their beloved fathers, as they were killed in the battle against the attackers,” he said.

The 210th Police Day Memorial Parade 2017 this time carries the theme ‘The Police and the Community Are Inseparable’.

Meanwhile, Najib said all the successes and recognition achieved by Malaysia would not have been possible without peace and prosperity enjoyed all this while with the assistance of and role played by police personnel.

Among the country’s achievements mentioned by Najib were the launch of the Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ), the first digital economic hub in the world outside China several days ago and the position of Kuala Lumpur as the 19th out of 100 most prosperous capital cities in the world in the Sustainable Cities Index 2016.

“All these would not have been successfully realised without making security and peace as fundamental issues, which were among the major prerequisites for national development and prosperity,” he said.

Meanwhile, Najib praised the efficiency of the police in handling the murder case of North Korean national, Kim Jong-nam.

On Feb 13, Jong-nam was killed at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 while waiting for a flight to Macau.

He said although the high-profile case had attracted worldwide attention, the police had acted swiftly in unraveling the case, besides demonstrating high professionalism in handling the investigation.

In the meantime, Najib said the government realised the tasks and responsibility of the PDRM in facing challenges which were becoming more complex and difficult including white-collar crime involving the abuse of complex computerised technology; cross-border organised crime and cyber crime.

“Thus, I believe that as a dynamic and progressive enforcement organisation, the PDRM must carry out transformation, move in line with current demands, environmental changes and increasing public expectation,” he said.

In this regard, Najib welcomed the numerous initiatives carried out by the police in tackling crime, including the Voluntary Smartphone Patrol (VSP) initiative launched today.

The VSP initiative is one of the programs under the National Blue Ocean Strategy (NBOS), where the PDRM is the implementing agency, through engagements with more than 11 million users of smartphones throughout the country to beef up crime monitoring activities by involving the community as the ‘eyes’ and ‘ears’ of the PDRM. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said he was shocked and saddenned by the attack outside Britain’s Parliament yesterday.

He said ‘Malaysia stands with the United Kingdom’ over the incident which left about 10 people injured including a policeman.

“My thoughts & prayers with innocents affected. Malaysia stands with UK. Must never surrender to terrorism,” he said on his Twitter account, Thursday.

The foreign media reported that a policeman was stabbed and that the attackers shot several members of the public in what has been described as a terror attack.

British Prime Minister Theresa May, who was present in the Parliament Building as the British Parliament was in session, was reported to be safe. – BERNAMA

LANGKAWI – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today officiated the naming ceremony of the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency’s (MMEA) latest asset, ‘KM Pekan’.

“Bismillahirahmanirahim (In the name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful)…I name this MMEA ship ‘KM Pekan’. May God bless her,” he said at the ceremony held in conjunction with the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition 2017 (LIMA’17) here.

Also present were Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein and the Deputy Land Infrastructure, Transportation and Tourism Minister of Japan, Tanaka Ryosei.

Meanwhile, MMEA director-general Admiral Maritime Datuk Seri Ahmad Puzi Ab Kahar said the Japanese government had given ‘KM Pekan’, along with another offshore patrol vessel, as gifts last year.

“We have also sent our set of crew to Japan to bring home another vessel like KM Pekan, which will arrive next month,” he said.

Ahmad Puzi said in addition to the gifts, the Japanese government had also offered assistance amounting to RM30 million to upgrade the facilities onboard the vessels.

“We will upgrade these ships including the radars to suit the operational needs along the country’s territorial waters,” he said.

The 92-metre long KM Pekan can cruise up to 20 knots and is equipped with a helipad and the latest radar.

The vessel is capable of carrying out sea operations and patrols in the South China Sea and the east coast of Sabah for 30 days at a time to help in law enforcement and missions in the area. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak will launch the first Digital Free-Trade Zone on Wednesday.

Deputy minister of International Trade and Industry (Miti) Datuk Ahmad Maslan told Parliament today, the event will also see the presence of Alibaba founder, Jack Ma.

He said this when replying to a question from Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Leo Michael Toyad Abdullah (BN-Mukah)on the strategic framework being undertaken by Miti to
ride the Industry 4.0 wave, as it could enhance the country’s income to RM2 trillion in the next seven to eight years.

The Digital Free-Trade Zone, a brainchild of Najib, is being planned to encourage more people to join the country’s e-commerce sector.

The implementation of the first Digital Free-Trade Zone in the world was unveiled in the 2017 Budget.

Internet tycoon Jack Ma was appointed Malaysia’s digital economy adviser by Najib during his official to China last year, and to help spearhead the country’s e-commerce development.

The Digital Free-Trade Zone will merge physical and virtual zones, with additional online and digital services to facilitate international e-commerce and invigorate Internet-based innovation.

Ahmad said Malaysia as a country that depended on trade needed to enhance its value chain to become a high quality factory base through the use of technology to effectively compete at both the regional and global levels.

“As such, the government has a number of initiatives related to Industry 4.0 including declaring 2017 as the Malaysia Internet Economy Year,’ he added.

Industry 4.0 encourages companies to use automation and exchange data in manufacturing technology that creates smart plants, with machines linked to the Internet and a system that can capture the overall production chain.

Ahmad said the contribution of Malaysia’s digital economy to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) had reached 17.8 per cent in 2015 and almost realised the targeted 18.2 per cent set for 2020.

“A sum of RM162 million was allocated in Budget 2017 for various programmes as e-Commerce ecosystem and the Digital Maker Movement, as well as identifying a new location for the Digital Hub Malaysia,” he added. – BERNAMA

Najib Wants 'Economic Sabotage' To Be Stopped

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak wants certain parties to stop from indulging in economic sabotage in the interest of the people and country.

He said the views and opinions made without facts and basis aimed to undermine the national economy and would create sentiments that could affect the national economy.

“As such, this should not be continued although we have political differences, but national interests should not be gambled away in matters concerning party politics.

“This is of utmost importance because national interest supersedes everything else and this is what I hope for and I appeal that such elements do not crop up,” he said in the oral question and answer session in the Dewan Rakyat, here today.

He was replying to a supplementary question from Datuk Seri Dr Irmohizam Ibrahim (BN Kuala Selangor) who wanted to know how the government tackled the pressure on the ringgit and the economic sabotage carried out by certain parties to the effect that national economic stability was jeopardised.

He cited the example where the government almost missed the chance of getting a substantial Saudi Aramco investment of RM31 billion recently because of a sabotage carried out by such groups.

However, he said, the government managed to convince the investors concerned by presenting accurate facts on the actual economic situation in the country.

“Ahamdulillah (with the will of Allah), we managed to convince them that the Malaysian economy is very well handled and we received high ratings from the ratings agencies.

“For example, we are in category ‘A-‘, there are only a few countries in the ‘A’ category, but what was being spread by certain parties was otherwise,” he said.

Earlier when replying to the original question from Dr Tan Seng Giaw (DAP Kepong) who wanted to know how the government had overcome the pressure on the ringgit, the Prime Minister said the declining currency rate was not unique to Malaysia alone, but the situation was also faced by the regioal currencies which reflected a strengthening of the United States’ dollar. – BERNAMA

PEKAN – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak spent time to attend the wedding of two brothers at their home in Kampung Panchor, here today.

Najib spent more than 10 minutes at the wedding of Yuzry Fazly Ahmad Jamili, 28, and his bride, Nor Aniza Abdul Rahman, 28, who is the Information Head of Pekan UMNO Puteri movement, and his elder brother Yudie Fazly, 33, and his bride Nur Ain Mohamad Radzai, 33.

Najib also sprinkled rose water and ‘bunga rampai’ on the two couples.

Yuzry, when met by reporters, said he and his brother had planned to have the wedding at the same time and invited the prime minister to their wedding two weeks before the event.

He said he was thankful to the prime minister for spending time to attend their wedding despite being busy with his official duty as the country’s number one leader. – BERNAMA