China must change its investment strategies in Malaysia

Wan Saiful Wan Jan wrote a piece titled ‘Malaysia’s priority is to manage not stop, China’s investments’ in the Today paper on 11 Jul 17. While many doubters are raising red flags when the Chinese govt is pouring money into Malaysia, Wan Saiful took a slightly different stand, understand the pros and cons and manage it to the best advantage of Malaysia. The money coming in is good if not why ask for the money, but more important is how to capitalize it to the best for Malaysia and its people. Who else is going to give you money?

In his article he addressed some issues with the Chinese investments and quoted the experience in Latin America and Africa to offer some hindsight on the pitfalls to avoid. One of the key issues is the repayment of the soft loans for the infrastructure that China is building for Malaysia. Wan Saiful lamented that after the projects are completed, Malaysia would have to pay and pay, ie to repay the loans over 20 years or more, and plus interest some more. This is bad. Ok, pointed noted. China must reconsider this, maybe let Malaysia determine how long to repay the loan. But this is also bad. The best thing that China could do is to offer the loan to build the infrastructure without having to pay back, build them for free, give the loan for free. Now that would be nice. China must seriously consider this strategy then Wan Saiful and his friends would not have to raise this concern again.

The second serious concern and I quote, ‘Not only does China get back a substantial portion of its money immediately in the form of payment for work done by their state owned enterprise CCCC, they will also get more money when repayments start, with interest. Ultimately, over the long term, there is still an outflow of funds from Malaysia to China.’ How can China do this? This is no good. China must rethink how not to get back a substantial portion of its money immediately for payment for work done and to ensure that there is no outflow of funds from Malaysia to China. Again, the solution is simple. Build for free, give the loan for free. No need to pay back and Malaysia will be very happy.

Another concern, the infrastructure built may not be profitable and ‘the risks and liabilities are borne by Malaysian taxpayers through a government guarantee of the loan.’ Now how to overcome this? Maybe China should guarantee that the project should be profitable and take the risk and bear the liabilities if the project is not profitable. How about that? This is something that China must seriously think over before embarking on the project. It is not the responsibility of the Malaysian govt to ensure that the project is profitable or useful to Malaysia.

Another important point raised by Wan Saiful is how Venezuela ended up with huge debts despite China’s soft loans. Venezuela’s mistake was to agree to repay the loans with oil. But then oil price collapsed. With this lesson, China must let Malaysia choose whatever way it wants to repay the soft loan, maybe by paying in ringgit, RMB or US dollars or coconuts. Oops, not a good idea either. The value of the currencies can fluctuate and Malaysia could end up paying more. Maybe China can work out a flexible option to let Malaysia pay in whatever currency or commodities it so chooses without having to make exceptional and unexpected losses. The best way is to leave the option for repayment blank, to be determined by Malaysia as and when it likes. That should do the trick, I think.

And another point, not the last, is the transfer of technology. From Malaysia’s past experience with investments from western countries, including Japan, there was always a transfer of technology to Malaysia. Look at how much technology the Proton car has transferred to Malaysia today. Or remember Dunlop, Shell and all the famous western companies that have invested in Malaysia and all the technologies they have transferred to Malaysia and made Malaysia a modern and industrial power house? China must transfer its technologies to Malaysia just like what these western and Japanese companies did before, the Sony, Panasonic, Sharp etc. This should be easy for China, by following what the western and Japanese companies have done before.

Oh, one more concern, Chinese companies should not use Chinese workers in their projects. They must employ the Malaysians to do the job. Actually it would be easier and less troublesome if China just offer the money to Malaysia and let Malaysia hire all the locals to work on the projects and all the local SMEs would also have subcontracts to work on. Just give the money to Malaysia and everything will be fine. It would also be easy for China too, no need to do anything. A little catch, would China still be responsible for the completion of the projects and profitability of the projects when Malaysians are doing all the work?

Oh, one more very big concern. China is an authoritarian state promoting authoritarian capitalism. If more Chinese investments poured into Malaysia, Malaysia is likely to be influenced and become an authoritarian regime as well. This is so dangerous. How to overcome this? Ok, Wan Saiful concluded with this remark, ‘The responsibility to ensure good governance in Malaysia lies with the Malaysian government and the Malaysian people, not China.’ So China no need to do anything, just invest and don’t try to influence the Malaysians to become an authoritarian state. Don’t try regime change also. Don’t ask questions about 1MDB. I am not sure how easy it is to influence the Malaysian leaders and people to become an authoritarian state just by investing and building infrastructure in Malaysia. I am still scratching my head.

China should read my above points carefully and seriously rethink how they could invest in Malaysia without getting back their investment capital. If they continue to do it this way, always thinking of repayment, Malaysia is likely to invite western countries to invest in Malaysia with free loans, no need for repayment. Then China would lose out in investing in Malaysia.


Virgo49 said...

Western countries free loans??

Yes, they bombed and destroyed your whole country, then they moved in to loot.

Next, they took all your whatever Resources you have under their charge.

See Whats happening to Iraq and their left behind legacy.

See so many Gulf States under their balls.

They stirred Shits into having the Gulf States against Qatar and now have this Tilson acting as God to heal the rift.

Tell the Wan or One, nobody spares you the monies thru their hard labour for free.

You spend your time having Fiesta whilst everyone works till their bones to give you free loans??

LKY famous quote No one owes you a living and what's wrong with making more monies can spur your hides till bleed.

Water increase 30% in July already reflected in early July bill.

And GST credits not credited yet.

Till Halimah become PRESIDENT.

He Thinks Others Are Fools said...

One very important question, very extremely IMPORTANT QUESTION to this Want SIN-FULL.


Anonymous said...

You think China is stupid to pour money into them?

No! China is least worry about paying for the loans.

They have plenty of islands and plantations.

No money never mind, just give away a few of the islands and plantations.

Simple as that! So risk-free investments!


LKY Student said...

Halimah also sounds like Harimau, is it not.

Harimau is male tiger in Malay. It shows it ferosity outwardly.

Halimah is female tiger in Malay. It does not show its ferosity outwardly. It is gentle outside but deadly inside.

LKY said, "I stand corrected". I follow my teacher. Although dead but he is still one of my teachers. I learn all the 'good' examples from him.

Anonymous said...

No need to invite US to invest in projects in Malaysia. American capitalists are hiding in the bush and are waiting and ready to pounce on any opportunity to grab a chance to invest in Malaysia. US will send its "Economic Hitmen" ( Please read the article by John Pilger, America's Economic Hitman." ) to do the job. US economic hitman will negotiate and psycho the Malaysian government to accept a project at many multiple times above its actual cost. The catch is that the Malaysian politicians involve in the project/s will be promised a big cut first and the workmen and machineries will be from America. All the money will go back to America and when the project is finished Malaysia will find itself bankrupted by loans inflated to tens or hundreds of billions of dollars which Malaysians have to pay without end. Of course America will be happy and the few politicians involved in the project/s will be happy. But should Malaysia is unable to pay back the inflated loan CIA and the Pentagon will step in and demand that Malaysia allow US to operate military bases in the country as a trade of.


Anonymous said...

This wan thinks China owes Msia a living, build for free, no need to pay and must guarantee profit some more. IMH case. Gila.

Anonymous said...

This One Sinful is so so so smart until God also scared of him. May be he should be Satan's Adviser.

Free-Loader Is Always A Loser said...

Singapore Govt should engage this Want Sai Full (full of "SAI" in his brain) as Foreign Talent to replace Finance Minister or the Trade and Industry Minister. Sure can get a lot of FREE LOANS from China!

Anonymous said...

Another very 'smart' person, some people called Pinocchio because of his big ugly nose, tried to con China, implying that Chinese Leaders are stupid and backwards:

At the FutureChina Global Forum yesterday (July 13), Teo Chee Hean tried very hard to sell Singapore’s capabilities (incapabilities) to China, hoping to get a role in China’s lucrative One Belt One Road (OBOR) Initiative: He said:

“These include going beyond individual projects to form a network, beyond physical links to include digital and human networks; leveraging on international and institutional financial resources; and working inclusively with partners all along the Belt and Road. Singapore will work with China to help realise this potential."

He claimed that Singapore could play an important role in the OBOR project in four areas – maritime safety in the Malacca Straits, digital connectivity, financial funding and setting up of free trade zones.

However, he got no response from China.

Maritime safety in the Malacca Straits are taken care of by Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines.

China has no short of money funding the OBOR project.

China certainly has more expertise in setting up free trade zones as compared to Singapore.

Singapore has no talents in digital connectivity due to its total reliance upon the shoulders of foreign IT talents, especially the 2nd and 3rd rates from India.

China officials are evidently not interested in Teo Chee Hean's offer.

There has been many single-monologue of “warming ties” with China propagated by the PAP's Tabloid, the 154th Straits Times, after China started to retaliate against PM Lee Hsien Loong's unwarranted and aggressive attacks repeatedly upon China's National Integrity, Sovereignty and Strategic Interests openly when he was the guest of the Imperialist Japanese Hawks and the guest of President Obama at the White House of USA.

Singapore-China diplomacy is currently at its record low due to Lee Hsien Loong allowing US Navy to make use of Singapore to launch aggressive and intrusive military activities against China's South China Sea's project.

Also Lee Hsien Loong has repeatedly provoked China by criticising China's environmental problems in Peijing and telling China to follow the Rule of Laws regarding the South China Sea territorial disputes, while he himself refused to abide by Singapore's Rule of Laws when accused of abuse of power and dishonourable conduct by his own siblings.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Anon 1:09, you hit the nail on its head. The sad state of self delusion which is being practised here and only they could believe in it, and they want the Chinese to believe in the same delusion, blindly.

Singapore is totally irrelevant in the BRI as far as China is concerned. They can be generous by throwing a few pieces of crumps on the floor if Singapore behaves well. Otherwise they could totally ignore Singapore and nothing will affect the success of the BRI.

Virgo49 said...

Hi Anon 1.09

Sinkieland offered to bridge fiances and offered financing. Aiyo, they think China got less monies than the GIC and Temasick Holdings and our Reserves.

Every Chinaman and woman just throw a split at Sinking Land and it will sink.

Telling them that our Navy can ensure safe passages for shipping routes. OBOR no need the Straits of Malacca. They pass thru Isthmus of Kra and inland.

Anyway, Straits of Malacca is jointly controlled to Indonesia and Malaysia. Wait till Pulau Batu becomes theirs, then the Malaysian Navy and Coast Guards will give you hell.

Then Malaysia and Indonesia restricted their Airspace. Airforce also becomes redundant.

See how you punched above your weight. Small Nations must let others know their views to ensure that they are been intimidated and bully.

What's hogwash.

Anonymous said...

Uncle Chua, my father is your blog's regular visitor. He asked me to wite something. So I tot the above is relevent to link to your today's article.

Btw, I am doing a Research project on Singapore's Viability as an It Hub and Communications Centre jn the next century for my PhD.

Your blog gives me a lot of ideas which expand my horizon of interests and knowledge.

Thanks to you, Uncle Chua, for your relentless efforts in educating young people like me.

b said...

In politicks, there are no friends only interests. When any big state moves into any small state, small state must always be wary.

b said...

So long as people benefits, never mind the elites suffer. China should help develop msia so msia can be a nice country to sg and allow sg to reunite with msia and we can go there buy low costs properties and cars and retire there.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Hi Anon 2:36pm, Good to hear that you are doing your Ph D on Singapore's future in IT and Comms.

My blog is here to offer views from the most unpleasant and awkward angle, like off the beaten track, unlike the parroting in the main media.

If it can poke you to look at various angles, that would be good.


patriot said...

DPM could have misread the Situation and Reality.

Fact 1, China definitely knows the Sin Leaders very well and would have seen through all of them. So, however and whatever Teo Cheehean tried to play, it will be reciprocated accordingly.

TCH appeared to mistake the Malacca Strait for the Johor Strait(River).
How much say can Sin have over the Malacca Strait or for the Matter even Johor River?

For survival, some Sin Leaders are playing diplomacy. However, it was very obviously playing and acting for damage repair which is better off without doing so.
A discreet apology or an open repent would have better outcome.


Anonymous said...

China's elites of the Inner Circle of Power has indirectly slammed Singapore leaders who boasted about punching above their weight thus:

"The little puppet of US Imperialist Hegemony does not seem to realise that it has no punch and no weight. It is suspended in thin air by one string, surrounded by a lot of hot air balloons...."

patriot said...

It is only commonsense
nobody likes hypocrites
shameless folks.


Anonymous said...

Rb, the guy is a moron Kar not worth our time reading it

Anonymous said...

I oso seen a video of another guy, a Jamaican I think, talking about the same thing. They think China is Santa Claus or their father, build things for them for free, give them free money, no need to pay. They want China to take its own hard earned money, taxpayers money and shower onto them.

Yes, stupidity has no cure.

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Anonymous said...

What the fuck. Is your posting an advertisement?