External factors pose challenges to economic policies
While busy preparing for the coming general election, the national leaders of the party in power are now equally busy preparing the 2013 annual budget.
The budget is expected to be tabled with the international economic environment in mind, which poses many challenges. Our major markets, namely, the United States and eurozone have not fully recovered from the crisis, while the major Asian economies, especially China and India, are reducing their speed to a lower gear.
Malaysia has been able register respectable growth rates in the last several quarters, which was made possible by our domestic consumption and private investments.
If the international economic scenario does not improve in the next two quarters, our growth this year may be dampened, as our domestic source of growth alone cannot sustain a more respectable momentum. In any case, the public sector, with its deficit, will not be able to pump-prime the economy again.