Thursday, October 29, 2009

Infrastructure devt gets timely boost: Tengah

BINTULU: Sarawak and Sabah would not be left unaided in the 2010 Budget allocation tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak on Friday.

Second Planning and Resource management Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hassan said even though the budget looked generally small, the two states were given special attention by the federal government.

“I think it is very good. Focus was given to infrastructure development, particularly for Sarawak since the state needs more good infrastructure,” he said.

Besides he said the interests of the people and the less fortunate groups are given priority.

“Even in this economy uncertatinty, Budget 2010 is comprehensive. The government under the prime minister is able to come up with one budget to take of interests of all sectors.

“This is in line wit the government effort to have and achieve a new model of economy which emphasise education, marketing and innovation,” he told reporters when met at ParkCity Everly Hotel after attending the Head of State’s 88th birthday celebration at Bintulu civic centre.

He was confident the budget would boost the country’s economy particularly during economic tough times.

Meanwhile Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department (Human Resource and Training) Datin fatimah Abudllah said; “I found the 2010 Budget focussed on physical development from the quality aspect and also pre-school education, childcare and teacher leadership.

“Not only physical infrastructure was emphasised but also other sections that contribute to quality human capital development. So we feel this focus is right,” she said.

She said if the government tries to produce quality human capital, it has to give priority to the physical aspect.

On pre-school, she said: “We know somehow if we want to have an efficient workforce, we have to start from the bottom from childhood and pre-school stages.

“In the long term, to be an extraordinary country, we have no choice but to give priority to education, this is the right strategy,” said Fatimah who is also Assistant Minister for Agriculture (Home Economics and Training).

Assistant Minister of Infrastructure Development and Communication Datuk Lee Kim Shin was satisfied wit the fouc of the budget, especially efforts to develop the state’s infrastructure.

Lee said the 2010 Budget has taken a different approach especially to introduce a high-income economy in this country.

He agreed with the federal government emphasis to develop human capital which is the foundation to creating high income communities.

The decision to give tax relief to broadband subscription fees by up to RM500 a year from 2010 to 2012 to individual taxpayers can speed up the process of producing a high-tech community, he said.

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