The inclusion of new faces in the Cabinet line-up including economic and financial technocrats will provide a good opportunity to enhance the Islamic economic system in Malaysia, the Deputy President of the Malaysian Islamic Chamber of Commerce, Mohamad Sahar Mat Din, said.

“We strongly support the appointment of Maybank’s President and Chief Executive Officer Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar as Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of the Economic Planning Unit,” he told Bernama here Wednesday.

Sahar said that Wahid, who had vast experience in finance and banking including Islamic finance, should bring about innovative changes to the country’s economic institutions.

“We hope that these new faces would be able to carry out our aspirations in making the Wakaf institution as a new economic catalyst,” he said.

He said that Wakaf institutions would be able to provide benefits irrespective of race or religion.

Meanwhile, other local industry players and corporate figures expressed the hope that the new Cabinet unveiled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak can bring a new dynamism to the country’s administration and make the economy more vibrant.

Malaysia Biomass Industries Confederation President Datuk Leong Kin Mun hopes the Cabinet would introduce innovative ideas to improve the public service delivery system and create greater economic competitiveness.

On the appointment of Abdul Wahid, Leong said the combination of public sector value and corporate culture could form a good yardstick of a performance-driven culture.

Wahid, 49, will be appointed as a Senator on June 5 to head the Economic Planning Unit, under the capacity of a Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department.

Magna Prima Bhd Chief Executive Officer Datuk Rahadian Mahmud Mohammad Khalil said the country could expect fresh and appealing ideas in Malaysia’s transformation from the new faces in the Cabinet.

“Hopefully, there will be some changes in order to spur business growth in the country so that more business and job opportunities could be created,” he told Bernama.

Meanwhile, Chairman of Eversendai Corporation Bhd, Datuk A.K. Nathan said he hopes the main focus of Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed’s reappointment as Minister of International Trade and Industry should be to position Malaysia in a place far ahead from now, in terms of international business and economic linkages.

He said Malaysia, should certainly be regarded as the most favourite investment destination and as the most shining economy among its peers in the Asean region.

Nathan said with Mustapa’s immense exposure and experience in MITI for the last four years, more Malaysian companies can be assisted to go global and further ease the import and export of goods and services.

“International businesses are concluded based on relationships. MITI will surely have the edge now to assist more Malaysian companies, since the minister has been retained.

“I would also like to congratulate Mustapa for being reappointed as the MITI minister, as he is a very focused man with pure determination and ambition,” he added.

Affin Investment Bank head of retail research Dr Nazri Khan said the Cabinet clearly indicates to the investment and international community that Malaysia is stable, ready to bring changes and remains open for business.

He said it representative of all sectors of Malaysians — politicians, corporate and social activists, which could go a long way in fulfilling the Prime Minister’s pledge of reconciliation with all Malaysian states, no matter which party controls those states.

“The new Cabinet line-up signals a business-friendly composition, a good match between the right people and the right jobs and suggests a working government that can make good decisions to ensure more straight quarters of growth over the next few years,” he said.

He also foresees that the new Cabinet composition would reassure the market on the stability and capacity of the government to make growth policies and sound decisions for the future of the Malaysian economy.

“Given that the Cabinet contains new faces, it shows that the government’s transformation agenda is not just continuing, but working at all levels, be it corporate and social, urban and rural, among the young and old, as well as between Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah and Sarawak,” he said.

He believes the Cabinet line up will be positively received by investors and sustain the strong surge seen on Bursa Malaysia.


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