Malaysian PM Mahathir says growing countries need different trade protections
Mahathir Mohammed, Malaysian Prime Minister, was quoted saying that growing economies like his country need a different and growth favorable trade protections. He pointed out need for renegotiation of the Trans Pacific Pact (TPP).
The 92 year-old Mahathir who recently became the Prime Minister after Malaysians voted out the previous administration who was believed to be massively corrupt after leading the country for six decades after independence.
Mahathir told an international seminar in Tokyo on his first foreign trip since the election that “different economies needed different rules in order to compete fairly with giants such as the US and China.”
“Small countries cannot compete on the same terms as bigger countries,” he said on the second day of a three-day visit, during which he will woo Japanese investment and meet Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and other officials. “We are not completely against the TPP but it needs to be re-negotiated … so that smaller countries would have the chance to compete because they would be given certain handicaps,” he said.
“Yes, I am still in favor of EAEC. In the past, of course, we were not able to do this due to the objections of America, but now America seems to become isolationist again so it is not in a position to demand that we cannot form EAEC,” he said. Mahathir said foreign direct investment should involve bringing in capital and workable ideas.
“We have to deal with China whether we like it or not, we should deal with it as a group,” he said.
Mahathir however said that he desires to stay in power for as long as the people of Malaysia wants him to stay.
In a report comparing his first term the previous administration, it states that “Mahathir’s first term. Its domestic market share peaked at 74 percent a decade later but Geely bought 49.9 percent of the struggling carmaker last year, marking the Chinese automaker’s first push into Southeast Asia.”