We often refer to Malaysia as the Asian Tiger when it comes to our economic power but one economist seems to think otherwise. FMT reported that Madeline Berma questioned Malaysia’s title as the Asian Tiger of the economy because she said that we are only a “second-tier Asian” economic power.
She added that we only qualify as a little tiger or little dragon, and is worried that the little tiger isn’t growing any teeth. She meant that we are not growing into a formidable force in the economy.
Besides that, Madeline reckoned that the actual four tigers of the economy are:
- South Korea
- Hong Kong
The economist pointed out that when Malaysia was booming on an international platform, there was excitement within the nation as we were first recognised as the little tiger.
Being recognised as the little tiger gave us a glimmer of hope that we could, one day, flourish to become one of the Asian Tigers in the economy.
However, that dream was quickly put on hold during the 1997 financial crisis and Madeline cautioned that it could happen again if the current government is careless.
On the other hand, Madeline also talked about the inequality in Malaysia which could be solved by “giving rights to others”. Speaking at a forum at the Rise of the Asian Tiger Convention at UiTM, Shah Alam, she was quoted as saying,
“People in Sabah and Sarawak are still left behind. They deserve extra help and support.”
According to Madeline, inequality is no more “horizontal”, referring to the issue of gaps between various races and ethnicities.
“Now what we worry about is vertical inequality, which is inequality within the communities themselves – for example, the inequality between the rich and poor Malays, or the rich and poor Ibans. We are not saying that we have solved the horizontal problem. It’s just that the dynamics are now different,” she said, before adding that the differences between Bumiputeras and non-Bumiputeras must be overcome.
Do you agree with Madeline’s statements? Do you think that Malaysia has a long way to go before we become one of the Asian Tigers? Let us know in the comments below!
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