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KPMG: Emerging economies vital on world stage [03-01-2013]  
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Emerging economies will continue to be important players on the world stage this year as they have displayed resilience in the global economic slowdown, said KPMG Malaysia in its outlook for 2013.

Where Malaysia is concerned, the leadership is expected to push forward with measures that have already proven to be beneficial and effective, notwithstanding the impending general election, which is widely expected to be held in the first quarter of the year.

Among these measures are those related to public services such as healthcare, education, transportation, crime prevention, curbing corruption and manpower, where opportunities abound to bridge the gap between supply and demand.

Boosting income and creating job opportunities will continue to be a priority. Further, it is hoped that improving the quality of the educational and medical sectors in line with market demand would open up more opportunities for both public and private investors alike, stimulating investments in the process.

KPMG Malaysia managing partner Mohamed Raslan Abdul Rahman (pic) opined that Malaysia was in a watershed period of an emerging common market in Asean and that the convergence presented great opportunities for those who sought a larger market.

“SMEs need to reinvent themselves to tap on opportunities like accessibility to markets, easier flow of labour and the convergence of regulations. There is a greater upside for Malaysia with the Asean convergence,” he said, adding that “however, we need to take cognisance of its implications on the corporate sector, particularly in the area of the capital market, reporting standards, regulations and flow of workforce.”

Raslan added that as the investor base in the country became more robust, calls for integrity and transparency to curb waste, fraud and abuse would increase. “Shareholders of listed companies will insist the companies practise good governance and accountability.”

Towards this end, the firm noted that “transparency can only be achieved with the full commitment and involvement at the most senior level and this has a direct impact on how the leadership discharges its duties to ensure sustainability of the companies under its care.”

Transcending to the political front, “Declaration of assets should be made compulsory for all political parties to submit their list of candidates to the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission for checks and the declaration of assets should be accompanied by a credible audit for a reputable party,” he added.

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