PETALING JAYA – Kelana Jaya MP Wong Chen has sought to disparage an International Monetary Fund (IMF) report cited by Prime Minister Najib Razak as evidence that Malaysia is on track towards high growth.
Wong, who heads PKR’s commerce and investment bureau, challenged the IMF to recommend Najib’s administration model to other countries but said he didn’t believe it would.
“I don’t think the IMF is really so impressed by Najib that it will recommend the Najib model,” he told FMT.
In a recent report, the IMF forecast that Malaysia’s real GDP growth would be between 5.5% and 6% in 2017 and 5.0% to 5.5% in 2018.
Wong accused the IMF of abandoning professionalism and failing to write a comprehensive report.
“The IMF visited Malaysia for 10 days and regurgitated economic data from Bank Negara and, based on the same, praised the Najib administration,” he said.
“The IMF is strangely impressed by the so-called comprehensive structural reform agenda as per the 11th Malaysia Plan. I am not sure how it came to that conclusion after such a short visit.”
He questioned whether the visit gave the IMF team enough time to grasp what was happening on the ground.
“What the IMF is obviously blind to is the fact that our democracy is on the retreat, human rights are suppressed, wages are low, actual inflation is high and a culture of total corruption as per the 1MDB scandal persists,” he said.
He also claimed the IMF had a track record of being excessively optimistic when assessing the economic performance of countries supporting agendas that were dear to it.
“It is normal practice for the IMF to cheerlead all sorts of economies, including those run by dictators and kleptocrats, provided they support neo-liberal policies,” he said.