The Star: Budget 2025 to continue with economic reforms without sidelining the people, says Anwar

PUTRAJAYA: Budget 2025 will continue to focus on efforts to achieve targets set under the Madani Economy framework, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Prime Minister said that a series of changes would also be put in place to help boost the country's economic growth.

Anwar, who is also Finance Minister, said that the government had made several policy changes which have shown positive results since early 2024.

He cited S&P Global Ratings reaffirming Malaysia's sovereign credit ratings at A- and Fitch Ratings at BBB+, with both maintaining their "stable" outlook as among some of the country's notable achievements.

He also said Malaysia showed a 4.2% growth in Gross Domestic Product for the first quarter of 2024 and an export growth of 5.2%.

However, Anwar acknowledged that changes can at times be a point of contention.

"Nevertheless, concerns can be ironed out by effective communication and proper dissemination of information," he said in his opening remarks at the Budget 2025 engagement session on Tuesday (July 9).

He said another crucial element that needs to be rectified is problems with the country's economic structure.

"The government has taken several measures to address this, such as the introduction of the Fiscal Responsibility Act, giving more clout and power to the Auditor-General and continuously improving governance. These are the prerequisites to strong economic growth," he said.

He said while introducing structural economic reforms, the government would also put in place policies that would ensure stronger social protection for the people.

"We must strike this balance because while we push for growth, we do not want people to be left behind," said Anwar.

He also said issues of concern affecting Malaysians, including the rising cost of living, would continue to be looked into.

"The government is aware how this (cost of living) has caused pressure on the people.

"We will look for new methods, stop monopolies, cartels and leakages so that any returns can be given back to the people," he said.

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