Kuala Lumpur, 30 October 2019 – The Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) launched the first in a series of GLC Monitor policy briefs earlier today. The brief urges the government to consider a more transparent approach toward reforming government-linked companies (GLCs).
In its election manifesto, the Buku Harapan, the government promised to reform governance of GLCs. This reform includes ensuring that the appointment of their board of directors would be made based on merit, not on political considerations.
But, as the brief titled “GLC Monitor 2019: State of Play Since GE14” suggests, changes have been made to the ministerial reporting lines for GLCs in five key ministries, thus resulting in the concentration of important economic institutions under Bersatu ministers as well as those widely perceived to be aligned to the Prime Minister.
The brief also reported appointments of party members to the board of directors of statutory bodies. The continued existence of political appointments not aligned with the spirit of Pakatan Harapan’s election manifesto raises questions about reconfiguration of effective control of GLCs which may be indicative of the old practice of using state institutions to serve political interests.
IDEAS CEO Mr. Ali Salman said that it is critical to bring back reforms, transparency and good governance as the centre points of PH’s project to improve the conditions under which GLCs largely operate with some exceptions.
The GLC Monitor policy briefs, to be jointly produced with Professor Dr. Edmund Terence Gomez, Dean of Faculty of Economics and Administration, University of Malaya, and IDEAS research team will next assess the state of GLC divestment.