Policy Ideas 2021-02-24T22:17:49+08:00
Author:  Tricia Yeoh

Date: May  2020

This is the second in a series of three policy papers on contemporary challenges surrounding federalism in Malaysia today, the first of which was Policy Ideas No. 59, titled “Restoring the Spirit of Federalism: Policy Options for a New Malaysia”. This paper will explore more exclusively the political influences stemming from the federal government and how to mitigate for such effects for a more well-functioning, sustainable fiscal regime of the country’s states.

Policy Paper No 62 – SMEs’ Compliance Cost in Malaysia
Author: Adli Amirullah, Aiman Wan Alias, Sabrina Sabu

Date: September  2019

Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) are a vital part of the Malaysian economy, comprising nearly 40% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Not only that, but many among the B40 (Bottom 40%) income groups are employed in SMEs. Government regulation can have a significant impact on these SMEs and to comply with government regulation constitutes a major burden  in terms of increased cost to operate businesses for the SMEs in Malaysia. If the burden of regulation can be reduced, this will therefore translate into a boost of income for the B40.

In this paper we detail out the results of a survey involving SMEs in Klang Valley, conducted to understand the burden of compliance with government regulation. The objective of this report is to identify how compliance with regulation contributes to the cost of doing business, as well as to inform further discussion about how to reduce these compliance costs.

Policy Paper No 61 – Malaysian Property Market: Affordability and the National Housing Policy
Author: Carmelo Ferlito

Date: June 2019

The policy paper is a follow-up analysis of our previously released study on the Malaysian property market (Ferlito, 2018a). The debate has evolved, and it is mainly focused on the issue of housing affordability, judged primarily by the use of the price/income ratio, which is a very limited instrument. This paper reaffirm the necessity of tackling the affordability issue in the realm of the general property market situation, which in the current scenario is facing a downturn readjustment process.

This paper divide to 4 section, the first section of the present work summarises the previous findings and extends them, taking into account development. In section 2, the paper discusses the approach to affordability and analyse the recently released national housing policy. In section 3, policy recommendations are presented, both with reference to the downturn phase of the property market and to the issue of affordability, with special attention to the possibility offered by the rental market. Section 4 concludes the paper.

Policy Paper No 60 – Economic Impact of Granting Refugees in Malaysia the Right to Work
Author: Laurence Todd, Adli Amirullah, Wan Ya Shin

Date: April 2019
In this paper, we consider the economic impact of granting refugees in Malaysia the right to work. A refugee is someone who has been forced to flee his or her country because of persecution, war or violence. A refugee has a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. The analysis in this paper also refers to asylum seekers. An asylum seeker is an individual who is seeking international protection. In countries with individualised procedures, an asylum seeker is someone whose claim has not been decided on by the country in which he or she has submitted it. Not every asylum seeker will ultimately be recognised as a refugee, but every refugee is initially an asylum seeker. Due to data limitations, the estimates in Parts 3 and 4 refer to the impact of granting refugees and asylum seekers in Malaysia the legal right to work.
This paper is organised into four parts:
In Part 1 we consider the current situation for refugees and asylum seekers in Malaysia; including their treatment under Malaysian law;
In Part 2 we consider the potential economic impact of granting refugees in Malaysia the right to work;
In Part 3 we estimate the impacts identified in Part 2 over a five-year period; and

In Part 4 we consider the potential longer-term economic contribution of refugees and estimate their potential economic contribution over 20 years.

Policy Paper No.59: Reviving the Spirit of Federalism: Decentralisation Policy Options for a New Malaysia
Author: Tricia Yeoh

Date: April 2019

Up to 2008, the spirit of Malaysia’s federalism had all but faded, given the country’s highly centralised institutions and system of political economy. It was only when five states fell to the then national opposition Pakatan Rakyat that same year that the discussion of federal-state relations, especially within Peninsular Malaysia, began to take on a more interesting tone. Over the following ten-year period up to 2018, states – not just those run by the national opposition – began to escalate their claims on a variety of policy issues, ranging to the demands for oil rights in Kelantan, Terengganu, Sarawak, and Sabah, to self-determination of companies selected to perform waste management services in Penang and Selangor as opposed to these being selected by the federal government. Where the federal government had previously typically responded to state complaints about funding gaps by allocating more funds, the relationship between the centre and the states required a maturing beyond such paternalistic reactions. The 2018 Pakatan Harapan general election manifesto contained a slew of offerings for such states in East Malaysia where the demands were the loudest, including returning Sabah and Sarawak to the status accorded by the Malaysia Agreement 1963, and Promise 24 even committed to “revive the true spirit of federalism”.

Policy Paper No.57: E-hailing regulations: striking the right balance
Author: Dr. Asrul Akmal Shafie

Date: February 2019

A rare disease is any disease that affects a small percentage of the population and are frequently debilitating to patients. Timely access to the right treatment is crucial for effective disease management and delayed access contributes to poorer treatment outcomes and more severe disease complications. This policy paper  “Improving access to orphan drugs in Malaysia” explores the challenges associated with accessing orphan drugs in Malaysia and proposes ways in which we can improve patient access to these drugs.

We explore the current situation, which includes difficulty in receiving diagnosis and obtaining treatment in time due to the lack of expertise along with limited treatment options. Orphan drugs are harder to obtain than other conventional drugs due to lack of economic incentive for manufacturers to develop drugs which can be attributed to the small market. This leads to orphan drugs being marketed at very high prices due to an absence of economies of scale in its sale. Low prevalence of the disease within healthcare settings and population in general results in a lack of understanding among physicians. The low prevalence makes it difficult to improve knowledge on the safety and efficacy of treatments through proper studies.

The paper explores different solutions to address these problems through two broader themes: controlling the high price of drugs and increasing the budget for orphan drugs. The solutions proposed under these themes are, controlling high prices of drugs and increasing the budget for orphan drugs.

Policy Paper No.57: E-hailing regulations: striking the right balance
Author: Laurence Todd, Adli Amirullah and Chiang Hui Xing

Date:  November 2018

E-hailing has revolutionised the private transport market in recent years. Consumers are able to summon a ride whenever and wherever they want and settle the bill electronically all through an app.This has made travelling around easier for the consumer and provided a new source of employment for e-hailing drivers.

This Policy Ideas considers the following issues: i) the economic impact of e-hailing in Malaysia, for consumers, drivers and the traditional taxi industry; ii) the impact of the government’s new regulations on the e-hailing market; and iii) how the government should develop the regulatory framework going forward in light of these considerations.

Policy Paper No.56 : Policy Paper No.56: Economic Benefits of ASEAN Single Aviation Market
Author: Adli Amirullah

Date:  November 2018

Air transport plays a crucial role in the overall economic prosperity of ASEAN. Aviation connects businesses, tourists, friends and family. It is a key enabler of trade and investment that supports millions of jobs and generates billions in economic growth. Air transport in ASEAN is underpinned by the ASEAN Single Aviation Market which is designed to drive integration and liberalisation of ASEAN’s aviation markets.

In this Policy Ideas, we explore the economic benefits of the ASEAN Single Aviation Market, considering both what has been achieved so far and what further potential there is. We also consider the steps needed to progress implementation of the ASEAN Single Aviation Market.