Highlights of 12 Malaysia Plan

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Main economic points from the 12th Malaysia Plan.

  • Eradicate hardcore poverty by 2025
  • Affordable homes for the poor
  • Enhance public safety, national security
  • Develop high-performing civil service, public servants
  • Introduce national policy to strengthen unity
  • Boost graduates’ marketability
  • Build infectious diseases institute

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob tabled the much-awaited 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP) in Parliament today, laying out his government’s five-year roadmap to achieve a prosperous, inclusive, and sustainable Keluarga Malaysia.

In his speech, Ismail Sabri said that 12MP would focus on efforts to revive the nation’s economic growth after the devastating Covid-19 pandemic.

He said 12MP aims at a fair and equitable distribution of wealth among the states and population while safeguarding the environment and sustainable development.

Ismail Sabri also thanked his predecessor Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, for his initial involvement in the preparation of the draft plan for the initiative.

In his speech, Ismail Sabri said that the World Bank estimates that there was an increase in the world’s hardcore poor, with an additional 97 million people in 2020, with Malaysia not exempted from the effects of the Covid-19 outbreak.

“Looking at the achievements during the 11MP period, which is between 2016 and 2020, the gross domestic product (GDP) grew at an average rate of 2.7 percent per annum, less than the original target.


“This is due to a significant contraction of 5.6 percent in 2020, despite the country achieving higher growth of 4.9 percent per annum in the first four years of the 11MP. Gross national income (GNI) per capita will reach RM42,500, or USD10,100 US dollars by 2020,” he said, adding that this value is 20 percent lower than the income threshold to achieve a high-income country status.

He said that all of the strategies and initiatives under the 12MP are also in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was agreed upon by all members of the United Nations (UN) in 2015.

Ismail Sabri said that while the government aims to drive Malaysia towards a developed, high-income and challenge-resistant nation in the future, such a triumph is meaningless if there are Malaysian families who are still marginalised from the development stream.

“We want to live happily together as a family regardless of income level, religion, race and ethnicity. In implementing development, environmental sustainability should be the main agenda of the country, as it will be inherited by future generations,” he added.

Ismail Sabri also listed several visions for the five-year 12MP; targeting the national GDP growth at 4.5 to 5.5 percent per annum between 2021 and 2025, estimating the average household income to hit RM10,000 per month in 2025 and reducing the GDP per capita gap between the Central Region and Sabah to be 1:2.5 ratio, and 1:1.2 for Sarawak by 2025.

He also announced a reduction in the intensity of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 45 percent to the 2030 GDP, based on the intensity of emissions in 2005, in line with the 2015 Paris Agreement.

The 12MP is focused on nine aspects:

  • Boosting economic growth
  • Strengthening growth catalysts
  • Improving the wellbeing of Keluarga Malaysia
  • Strengthening public security and order
  • Eradicating hardcore poverty and bridging the income gap
  • Empowering the Bumiputera agenda and Keluarga Malaysia
  • Boost the development of Sabah, Sarawak and the underdeveloped states
  • Accelerating green growth
  • Improving the efficacy of public service delivery and ensuring effective policy implementation.

Here is a quick roundup of some of the highlights in terms of policies, actions and plans from the nine focus areas under the 12th Malaysia Plan:

  1. Government to ensure more high-skilled jobs created by attracting high-technology new investments, encouraging industries to shift to automation and mechanisation in production, limiting entry of low-skilled foreign workers, enhancing industries-academia collaboration. In the long term, foreigners in the Malaysian workforce to be limited to a maximum 15 percent.
  2. Government to build 500,000 affordable homes for income earners in the bottom 40 percent (B40), middle 40 percent (M40) groups; RM2.25 billion allocation during the 12MP period to build and repair 85,500 housing units for the poor under Program Bantuan Rumah.
  3. Eradicate hardcore poverty by 2025. New specific units at federal and district levels will be set up with officers given specific duties to handle poverty at district level. Targeted financial aid such as cash handouts and social protection to continue. Programmes costing RM1.5 billion to be enhanced to improve B40 marketability, wellbeing, and purchasing power.
  4. PM calls for companies, individuals to help Malaysians out of poverty through aid-giving such as zakat, wakaf.
  5. Fixing poverty also means closing educational and nutritional gaps. B40 students to get priority for enrolment in prestigious schools and scholarships. Government to provide nutritious food to address increasing malnutrition among B40 children. Government to ensure M40 children have access to quality education at reasonable costs and encourage M40 to buy health, work insurance at affordable rates while training for M40 would be enhanced.
  6. New programmes, funding to improve Bumiputera businesses’ sustainability to hit 15 percent contribution to GDP by Bumiputera micro, small, medium enterprises in 2025
  7. Strengthen Bumiputera home ownership quota policies and implementation through closer cooperation with federal government, state government, local councils
  8. At least 30 percent Bumiputera corporate equity not achieved yet. To introduce safety net for sustainable Bumiputera equity ownership, where Bumiputera companies or Bumiputera shares only offered and sold to other Bumiputera consortiums, companies or individuals. Holdings and disposals of ownership in Bumiputera companies to be regulated by related ministries and agencies.
  9. Reassigning of officers at all government agencies, ministries for Bumiputera prosperity division with clearer mandate, function to be re-established to coordinate efforts for Bumiputera agenda implementation.
  10. Education for Orang Asli to be improved, enhanced their opportunities of receiving education until Secondary Five. Low-income Chinese community in new villages to have improved access to special business loan schemes, improved infrastructure, social amenities to continue. Government to continue supporting skills enhancement, targeted aid, entrepreneurship opportunities for Indian community, especially those with low income.
  11. Government plans to increase senior citizen centres from 140 nationwide currently to cover all parliamentary constituencies. should have more elderly-friendly cities in the future, as Malaysia is expected to be an aging nation by 2030.
  12. Continued empowerment of disabled community with programmes such as job coaching, entrepreneurship programmes, special career fairs, independent living centre services
  13. With women’s workforce participation rate targeted to hit 59 percent in 2025, improved services for childcare and elderly care at reasonable costs to encourage more women to return to work or remain working. To further develop women entrepreneurship, encourage online businesses. Civil and Shariah laws to be enhanced to deal with women-related issues. Introduction of gender empowerment framework.
  14. PM gives commitment for Malaysia to be neutral carbon country as early as 2050, says no new coal power plants will be built. Several gas power plants in Peninsular Malaysia to replace coal power plants. Renewable energy generation (solar, biomass, biogas) targeted to increase to 31 percent of all installed capacity in 2025.
  15. Government will ensure Undi18 constitutional amendment — which enables Malaysians aged 18 to vote — will be implemented soonest.
  16. Government targets digitalisation of government services or end to end online services to be improved to 80 percent in 2025. Government departments, agencies to be restructured to reduce bureaucracy. Government to improve selection and intake of managing officers and professionals to get the best talent. Study proposal to introduce law for clearer separation of powers and responsibilities between members of administration and civil servants. – MMO