Saturday, October 8, 2011

EXCITED over Malaysia's 2012 Budget?

malaysiakini has a good article Salient points of Budget 2012 that summarises the main items in the budget.
No doubt the main papers and the TV channels will be full of praise for the budget proposals and a sense of euphoria will be generated.
To me it seems the BN regime has designed this budget without taking into account our future situation. Remember we had one minister declare that Malaysia is headed for BANKRUPTCY if there is no CHANGE in the government's direction?
The Budget seems to be more a populist one that engages mainly the civil servants who already consume the biggest portion of the RM232.8bil portion. Look at figure for the Budget overall costs.
It shows that for every RM1 collected, 78sen is the cost of administering the system. In other words, government is too heavy or inefficient. The years of easy oil money have resulted in a bloated administration that is surely leading us to a GREEK-type crisis and we do not have an EU-type organisation that will come to our aid.
If you analyse the balance sheets of most banks, you will find that the cost/profit ratios ranges from 40% to 60% but the Malaysian government operates at 78% and the figure is still rising.

How did we end up with such a situation? Based on what has been happening, maybe the chart should be renamed with "Management Costs" replaced with "Mismanagement Costs". You see the government has been employing unemployable graduates for many years as their concept of CSR or Corporate Social Responsibility.
If you look at the picture on the "Mismanagement Costs", the picture is equally startling.
Emoulements is 28.6%, Service & supplies 16.8%, Allotment & fixed costs 53% - these are the main cost centres.
I presume that emoulements is basically the costs of salaries and perks of existing government employees.
Service and supplies would include work that has been outsourced? Not to forget the contract for the PM's executive jets.
Allotment and fixed costs is particularly worrisome as it is a whopping 53%. I suppose it includes the costs of pensions and medical costs of retirees.

I am not at all inspired by the populist Budget as it shows the government is unable to cut costs and reign in spending.
It is definitely an Elections Budget and I believe the polls will be held during the December holidays shortly after the civil servants and the marginalised have been given their "sweets".
Instead of just announcing the way "sweets" will be distributed, the Budget Speech should include how government has tackled wastage in the past year, based on the Annual Horror Report or the Auditor-General's Annual Report. In fact, we should table the AG's Report 2 weeks before the Budget Speech so that MPs can debate the Horror Report and hopefully avoid the Horror Budget.

charts thanks to malaysiakini

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