Budget Wishlist 

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Kuala Lumpur, Oct 7: Malaysia will present its 2023 budget today at 3pm MYT time as previously scheduled, a finance ministry spokesperson told Reuters recently.
Several companies wrote to DailyStraits.com and sent us their wishlist and here are some of the things they want to see in the upcoming budget. We kick start things off with…


Airbnb Head of Public Policy for Southeast Asia Mich Goh. Image supplied.
Mich Goh. Image supplied.

Airbnb applauds the Government’s unwavering commitment to protecting the rakyat’s well-being and driving greater economic resilience through targeted medium and long-term measures. 
We believe that this will support and future-proof Malaysia’s economy in a critical time of recovery, and spur efforts towards a more sustainable future.
The ongoing travel rebound presents new opportunities for local communities to benefit from and participate in the country’s economic recovery. 
Notably, earnings for Airbnb Hosts in non-urban destinations across Malaysia increased by approximately a third in the second quarter of 2022, compared to the same period in 2019, facilitating a more inclusive and equitable dispersal of tourism beyond popular tourist routes. 
As a partner to the Malaysian Government, Airbnb is committed to continue working hand in hand to rejuvenate the tourism industry by driving domestic travel and positioning Malaysia as an attractive digital nomad hub in the region. We will continue to execute on our strategic partnership with the Malaysian Green Technology and Climate Change Corporation to further the country’s green agenda, and support our local Host community and short-term rental accommodation partners.
We strongly hope that the initiatives tabled in Budget 2023 will benefit all tourism industry players – including our community of Malaysian Hosts, many of whom are everyday Malaysians and micro-hospitality entrepreneurs.
We stand ready as a committed partner to the government to create and implement solutions that support the travel and tourism economy, towards spurring greater revitalization of the tourism industry.

 Mich Goh, Airbnb’s Head of Public Policy for Southeast Asia, India, Hong Kong and Taiwan

Silverlake Axis

Othman Abdullah. Image supplied.

 We are witnessing an acceleration in the country’s Islamic finance space following the 2023 pre-budget announcement around driving the reformation of the Islamic economy. Malaysia is the world’s leader in Islamic finance, by strengthening its position in the fintech space and accelerating digitisation, it can create a route to accelerate its journey to full economic reformation.
The benefits of Islamic fintech to Islamic banking and finance have yet to realise their full potential. However, Malaysia’s Islamic banking has existed for more than four decades, indicating that our fintech Industry is lagging behind, attributed to the lack of industry maturity and comprehensive coverage of all sectors within the financial services industry. 
In line with that, the upcoming budget will need to fuel research and innovations to overcome the shortage of Islamic fintech innovations that solve real customer problems. In order to accelerate the adoption of Islamic fintech, various stakeholders must play their part in contributing to its development. Having said that, funding remains the key challenge, which can be addressed through national-level coordination among investors, entrepreneurs, and tech talent. 
Ultimately, we wish to see a budget allocated to close the talent gap through education, industry training and internship programmes. 

Othman Abdullah, CEO of Islamic Banking, Silverlake Axis

Heriot-Watt University Malaysia

Professor Mushtak Al-Atabi.

Following the announcement of the Federal  Government’s plans to announce the Budget 2023 today, Heriot-Watt University  Malaysia (HWUM) wishes to share its budget wish list.
Last year, the education sector received the highest allocation of more than RM67 billion as  announced in the 2022 budget speech. While we have been making progress, we feel that we  can do much more if the higher education sector is accorded a larger allocation in Budget  2023.
According to CGS-CIB Research, Malaysia’s GDP is likely to moderate to 4.1 per cent in the year  2023, from 5.2 per cent in 2022.
When economic growth shows signs of slowing down, it is time to  invest more in human capital development.
That is why we believe a greater allocation for the  higher education sector will enable Malaysia to move toward its goal of becoming a high income nation through both green and digital transformation, contributing to Malaysia’s overall  Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
To make this a reality, Malaysia must focus on fully realising its human potential. This begins  by supporting local students achieving enhanced educational outcomes through improving  schooling quality and providing adequate social welfare protection for household investments  in human capital.
In summary, Malaysia must begin to fully realise its human potential and fulfil the country’s aspiration of achieving the high-income and developed country status, the way forward is to assist local students to advance further in education by enhancing the quality of schooling to improve learning outcomes and providing adequate and social welfare protection for household investments in human capital formation.
HWUM remains committed to nurturing purpose-driven, future-ready leaders through its ‘Positive Education’ approach.

Professor Mushtak Al-Atabi, Provost & Chief Executive Officer, Heriot-Watt University Malaysia 

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