KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 24 — The parliamentary supermajority that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s government has secured will allow his administration to fully focus on reviving the country’s economy and soothe Malaysians anxious about the country’s growth, according to analysts.

Aside from easing the cost-of-living pressure on Malaysians, improvements to their prospects and standard of living would also have a corollary effect of reducing tensions and polarisation in the country, Syaza Shukri, assistant professor of political science at International Islamic University Malaysia told Malay Mail.

“I think they (the Anwar administration) have a plan and framework.

“But to improve the structural issues in the country takes time. Unfortunately, people want changes now.

“So, while waiting for the impact of the changes to kick in, the government needs to continue with assistance such as the direct cash transfer,” she said.

On Wednesday, polling firm Merdeka Center released a report titled “One Year Anniversary of the Unity Government: Survey Rating Outlook” that said 78 per cent of respondents named economic growth as their main concern, which also drove dissatisfaction with the government’s performance up to 48 per cent from 43 per cent in August.

Anwar took office exactly a year ago today on pledges to ease the financial burdens of Malaysians who were then grappling with spiralling inflation and an economy that was still finding its footing since the shock of the Covid-19 pandemic.

After last year’s general election, Anwar secured his office by cobbling together an unlikely coalition that included his Pakatan Harapan and rivals Barisan Nasional as well as the aligned Gabungan Parti Sarawak, going on to achieve two-thirds control of Parliament with his national unity government.

While he briefly lost this supermajority, he has since regained it with the unexpected pledges of support from four Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) lawmakers.

Nusantara Academy for Strategic Research (NASR) senior fellow Azmi Hassan pointed to how the political instability that saw the prime minister’s position change hands three times in the past five years had hindered the government in performing effectively.

In contrast, he said Anwar’s administration has held on strongly since last year, allowing it to undertake the reforms needed to address the systemic issues with Malaysia’s economy and set it on the path needed for sustainable growth and prosperity.

“The stability, I think, is the most important. That’s what we have been yearning for, for the last three or four years.

“It also sends an important message to foreign investors that, if they want to invest, that for sure a stable government with stable policies will be kept intact to give confidence to foreign investors,” he said.

This view appeared to be supported by Anwar’s announcement last week that Malaysia has secured RM63.02 billion in planned investments from global tech giants such as Google, Enovix Cooperation, Microsoft, TikTok, and more in addition to firms such as Abbott Laboratories, Mondelez International, Amsted Rail, Hematogenix, PerkinElmer, Ford Motor Company, Boeing, Amazon Web Services, and others.

However, such efforts would take time before their benefits to Malaysians and the local economy would begin to manifest.

Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) political analyst Abdul Aziz Azizam said the government should be given until at least the middle of its term for its economic policies to bear fruit.

He agreed that the economy must be prioritised but said 12 months is too short a time for any government to show measurable results.

“Honestly, there is no exact timeline for this, but perhaps we can say that within the mid-term, or a period of 2.5 to 3 years, there should be something tangible for the people,” he told Malay Mail.

Still, he said there was no doubt that Malaysians were still feeling the pressure of increase costs, notwithstanding the decline in the country’s inflation rate that officially fell to 1.9 per cent in September.

On October 12, Kuala Kangsar MP Datuk Iskandar Dzulkarnain Abdul Khalid was the first to throw his backing for Anwar, followed by Labuan MP Datuk Suhaili Abdul Rahman on October 30, Gua Musang MP Mohd Azizi Abu Naim on November 7 and on November 9 Jeli MP Zahari Kechik followed suit.

On Thursday, Anwar reportedly linked the interest of global industrial giants such as Google, TikTok, Infineon Technologies AG, China’s automotive company Geely and Tesla to invest in Malaysia with political stability under the unity government.