Dr Mahathir: BN squeezed 30% from investments as ‘reward’

PM assures potential investors that the corrupt practices won’t be repeated under the current govt


The previous Barisan Nasional (BN) administration had forced some investors to carve out 30% of investments as kickbacks for their projects to be approved, Prime Minister (PM) Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad revealed.

He said some investors had been “squeezed” for money to be paid as “incentives” for approving their investments in Malaysia.

“Investors were asked to give 30% in certain projects. This was how corrupt the previous government was,” Dr Mahathir said in a dialogue session with Chinese business leaders in Beijing, China.

Some 400-strong crowd attended the event organised by China Entrepreneur Club, chaired by billionaire and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd chairman Jack Ma.

The event was organised as part of Dr Mahathir’s five-day working visit to China beginning last Friday.

The PM said the corrupt policies of the previous BN government was one of the key factors for its downfall in the 14th General Election. He also assured potential investors that such practices will not be repeated under the current government.

“This government will not allow such practices as investments will be regarded as business and if they comply to our rules and regulations, the approvals will be given,” he stressed.

On concerns aired during the dialogue on processes to approve investments, Dr Mahathir said the new government has formulated a mechanism to approve investments in a reasonable period of time.

The mechanism will also ensure the necessary bodies to be answerable if the investments are held up beyond the stipulated deadline.

“We will ask the relevant bodies why you have not approved the investment or disapprove it, so they can’t sit on one case for too long.

“That is given you (investor) fulfil necessary rules and regulations, which is not very hard to adhere to.”