1. Two key approaches to review RMK11
  2. S&P Global Ratings believe trade war will have no immediate impact on ASEAN
  3. Penang to roll out RM3m heritage seed fund with pilot project
  4. Selangor Agro Market to be expanded to 34 new locations
  5. Institute of Corporate Directors Malaysia Launched to Enhance Board Effectiveness
  6. Indonesia calls for international help to deal with quake-tsunami

RMK-11 outlines two main approaches
The Ministry of Economic Affairs Malaysia has outlined two key approaches to review the 11th Malaysia Plan (RMK-11) to be tabled in Parliament on 18 October. Its minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said the approaches were to furnish the progress report in the first two years of the country under the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government; and the direction and policy of the country’s economy based on the PH manifesto. “The Cabinet has agreed that the ministry presents the Half-Term Review (KSP) containing the two approaches. “The presentation of KSP this time is unique because it not only presents the country’s economic performance in the first five years but the RMK-11 involves a new PH government formed after May 11,” he told reporters in Melaka.

Trade war will not have immediate impact on ASEAN
The rising tension between the US and China will not have an immediate impact on ASEAN’s economic growth as a majority of the countries in the grouping have a domestic demand-driven economy and are backed by sound economic and policy fundamentals. S&P Global Ratings Economist Vincent Conti said the movement of emerging currencies and trade tensions between the giant economies are two major factors affecting ASEAN economies. As for ASEAN net import growth, the impact would likely be minimal. “If trade takes a hit globally, the immediate growth impact on ASEAN will be mitigated and would really be felt, just not very significant in the net import trade growth. “However, the second round of impact on onshore investors, as well as, businesses are much likely to be visible,” he told a media briefing on ASEAN Credit Spotlight in Kuala Lumpur today.

Penang to roll out RM3m heritage seed fund with pilot project
George Town World Heritage Incorporated (GTWHI) has identified several cases as the pilot project to roll out its RM3 million Heritage Habitat Seed Fund. GTWHI general manager Ang Ming Chee said they are working out the final details of the project before launching it next month. She said they need to build up confidence among the stakeholders on the state’s initiative to encourage more building owners to take up the programme. The Heritage Habitat Seed Fund was introduced to encourage premise owners to restore their heritage premises while continuing to rent the premises to existing tenants without increasing rent charges. Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said this programme will enhance the quality of life of the people living in the heritage zone. Chow said the state needed to get some premise owners to buy in on the programme before they could roll it out. The Heritage Habitat Seed Fund is part of the state’s efforts to stop the exodus of long-term residents from the heritage zone.

State government to expand Selangor Agro Market to 34 new locations
The Selangor government intends to expand the Selangor Agro Market (SAM) programme to 34 more locations throughout the state, by early next year. State Infrastructure and Public Utilities, Modernization of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Standing Committee chairman Ir. Izham Hashim said that the programme had so far been implemented in 87 locations around the state, including in Shah Alam and Petaling Jaya. He said the 34 new locations would be in the districts of Kuala Selangor, Hulu Selangor, Gombak, Kuala Langat and Sepang. “This programme comprises the sale of products from the Small and Medium Industries (SMIs), fresh produce as well as agricultural products sold by Selangor entrepreneurs, with prices between five and 20 per cent lower compared to other areas. “That’s why we are planning to expand the locations because the response we have received very encouraging response from the people,” he told reporters in Selangor.

Institute of Corporate Directors Malaysia Launched to Enhance Board Effectiveness
The Securities Commission of Malaysia today launched the Institute of Corporate Directors Malaysia (ICDM), to enhance the professionalism and effectiveness of corporate directors in Malaysia. Formed by directors for the benefit of directors, ICDM’s main objectives are to promote excellence, integrity and the highest levels of skills and professional competence among corporate directors in Malaysia; represent the interests of its members; and advocate the adoption and application of corporate governance practices. “Recognising that better boards will create better values, the establishment of ICDM will add to the already rich and diverse corporate governance ecosystem to enhance director effectiveness and board leadership in Malaysia” said Tan Sri Ranjit Ajit Singh, chairman of the SC. Under the leadership of its inaugural board led by Tan Sri Zarinah Anwar and a professional management team, ICDM will focus on building a sustainable pipeline of directors through education programmes that equip directors with essential skills to serve on listed boards. ICDM also maintains a directors’ registry to provide director sourcing services to companies so that succession planning is competency-based. “ICDM is a one-stop centre that caters for all board and director needs, offering a suite of services designed to enhance board and director effectiveness,” said Zarinah, Chairman of ICDM. The establishment of ICDM was spearheaded by the SC as part of its Corporate Governance Strategic Priorities (2017-2020), and is also supported by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) and Bursa Malaysia.

Indonesia calls for international help to deal with quake-tsunami
The Indonesian government has appealed for international help to deal with the aftermath of a devastating series of earthquakes and a tsunami in the island region of Sulawesi that killed at least 832 people. Countries such as Thailand and Australia have already offered to help.  Officials fear the death toll will rise steeply in the coming days and are preparing for the worst. At Poboya – in the hills above the devastated seaside city of Palu – volunteers dug a 100 metre-long grave to bury the dead, with instructions to prepare for 1,300 victims to be laid to rest. Authorities are desperate to stave off any disease outbreak caused by decomposing bodies and have announced a 14-day state of emergency.