KUALA LUMPUR, June 11 — Barisan Nasional (BN) and Pakatan Harapan (PH) should focus on improving the economy to gain public trust to win the next general election, Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani said at the close of his party’s assembly yesterday.
The former second finance minister said that if the two coalitions, which are in partnership for the first time at the federal government level could revive the economy, their chances of winning the 16th general election in four more years is high, Mingguan Malaysia — the Sunday edition of Malay paper Utusan Malaysia — reported today.
“I believe that if BN and PH can improve the economy by 2027, God willing, we will gain a more brilliant success,” Johari was quoted as saying.
He said the ringgit slide and drop in Malaysia’s credit ratings showed the country’s economy was on the downturn.
According to the newspaper, Johari said Malaysia’s GDP was shrinking compared to its debt exceeding RM1 trillion to illustrate his point.
According to Bernama, the Finance Ministry expects sovereign debt to be fully settled in 2053 if no new loans are taken to finance the deficit and to refinance maturing debts from 2024 onwards.
The debt at the end of last year amounted to RM1,079.6 billion or 60.4 per cent of the GDP, the national news agency reported.
In January, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said that the national debt and its liabilities has hit RM1.5 trillion and needs to be addressed urgently as the country’s economic position is weak.
A recent poll by international market research firm Ipsos found that one in five Malaysians find it very difficult to cope financially and more than half are just getting by.