M'sia government prudent in reducing fiscal deficit -Khazanah deputy chairman

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KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 11): The Malaysian government is prudent in bringing down its fiscal deficit each time after a financial meltdown, said Khazanah Nasional Bhd Deputy Chairman Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop.

According to Mohamed Yakcop, the government is making sure its borrowings are for development purposes and not for operational expenditure.

"Therefore, these development would be able to bring returns and to pay for our borrowings.

"We are very careful in making sure that everytime when we expand our expenditures during a crisis, we will religiously bring it down after the problem is resolved," he told reporters at RAM’s Annual Bond Conference here today.

Khazanah is a government-owned investment arm.

According to the Finance Ministry's latest economic report, the government budget deficit as a percentage of gross domestic product is expected to decline to 3% in 2015.

This compares to the estimated 3.5% deficit in 2014.

The report indicated the country's Budget 2015 allocation amounted to RM273.9 billion. The figure comprises RM223.4 billion for operating expenditure and RM50.5b development portion.

Today, Mohamed Yakcop had spoken to reporters after delivering his keynote address at the event.

He said in his keynote address that the most important ingredient for development for developing countries, was infrastructure.

"Such a move will be positive for all countries, rich and poor, as infrastructure development will boost world GDP and consumption," he said.