KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 16 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad today hailed Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) as a success story of the government privatisation programme and said the power giant has won accolades for its achievements because it made changes boldly, sometimes even going against the grain.
The prime minister said the World Bank, in its Doing Business 2020 report, stated that Malaysia has retained the fourth position for two years consecutively in the area of getting electricity.
“The report had evaluated 190 countries/economies and our achievement is a huge leap from the first time that we were assessed in obtaining electricity supply in 2011, when we managed only the 60th spot.
“ and this (TNB) success had a direct effect in expediting economic growth through bigger investments and led to the expansion of the corporate sector,” he said when launching the An-Nur Balai Islam Complex at the TNB headquarters here.
Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Minister Yeo Bee Yin; TNB chairman Tan Sri Leo Moggie and TNB president and CEO Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan were also present at the event.
Dr Mahathir said through the National Privatisation Policy introduced in 1983, TNB, then known as the National Electricity Board (LLN), was among the government agencies that had been listed to go through the privatisation process.
“One of the main objectives of privatisation is to reduce the financial burden of the government. At the same time, it is believed that the move will bring many benefits to the organisation itself, including its employees.
“As the result of the privatisation of LLN, over 20,000 employees became the company’s shareholders then, enjoying better salaries and various benefits including bonuses and more,” he said.
He added that TNB’s privatisation has brought many benefits to the people of the country including improved services and productivity, thanks to the performance-based reward system.
In addition, he said, more than 60 per cent of TNB’s shares are held by various government-linked investment companies such as the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), Tabung Haji, Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB) and Retirement Fund Incorporated (KWAP).
“This, indirectly, has benefited tens of millions of account holders of these bodies.
“The dividend payments are not only enjoyed by investors, but also by the ordinary people who benefit from their contributions and savings.
“By looking at the TNB’s changes and achievements since its privatisation, we know that today’s success is a result of efforts and past planning,” he said, adding that TNB has also won three prestigious awards for the energy category and the latest was in the 2019 World Branding Awards.
Dr Mahathir then congratulated both the TNB and its employees and expressed appreciation for the company’s efforts to continue to share its prosperity with the people and the country. — Bernama