KUALA LUMPUR: The Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) World Factbook 2017 reports that Malaysia’s poverty rate is the lowest among Southeast Asian countries, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak.
The figure stands at 3.8 per cent, compared to Vietnam and Indonesia (11.3 per cent), Thailand (12.6 per cent), Laos (22 per cent), the Philippines (25.2 per cent) and Myanmar (32.7 per cent).
“If compared to other countries with a high poverty line like Syria (82.5 per cent), Madagascar (75.3 per cent) and Zimbabwe (72.3 per cent), I feel grateful over Malaysia’s success in ensuring the wellbeing of its people,” he said in his blog, sskeruak.blogspot.my.
Salleh also said that the report highlights that Malaysia’s per capita Gross Domestic product is US$27,200, which is far better than those of its regional peers: Thailand (US$16,800), Indonesia (US$11,700), the Philippines (US$7,700), Vietnam (US$6,400), Myanmar (US$6,000) and Laos (US$5,700).
Salleh stressed that Malaysia’s obvious success contrasts with the image painted by certain quarters who feel that the country has been left behind. The current data, he said, clearly shows that it has achieved a level of economic growth that is very good in contrast to its neighbours.
Salleh expressed confidence that through the government’s efforts at making Malaysia a high income nation, 2018 promises even greater improvement for the lives of the people. – Bernama