“Off to the Headmaster’s room, you go!”

Anwarista Tong Kooi Ong's paper with an agenda

Anwarista Tong Kooi Ong’s paper with an agenda

One of sodomite-convict Anwar Ibrahim’s staunchest supporter Tong Kooi Ong whose business paper has been instigating against 1MDB by echoing and perpetuating lies from London based Sarawak Group, deemed with the intent to demonise Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak, will now be reprimanded.

The Malay Mail Online story:

 

Home Ministry issues show-cause letter to The Edge over 1MDB coverage

 

KUALA LUMPUR, July 1 — The Home Ministry has issued a show-cause letter to The Edge over what Putrajaya deemed to be unverified news that was published by the business paper on debt-laden 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

An official with the ministry confirmed that the letter was sent to the publication, but did not reveal further details.

“We are in the midst of preparing a statement now and all the details will be there,” said the official when contacted by Malay Mail Online.

The show-cause letter comes a little over a week after Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi declared that the federal government will go after The Edge for publishing what it deems to be unverified news on 1MDB’s aborted joint venture with Petrosaudi International.

Ahmad Zahid said the authorities will investigate the business paper following the arrest of a former PetroSaudi executive believed to be the source of the leaked documents on an abortive US$1.2 billion (RM4.5 billion) 1MDB-PetroSaudi venture from which hundreds of millions were allegedly siphoned out.

The home minister said after receiving a report on the arrest from their Thai counterparts that included forensic analysis of the leaked data, that the Malaysian authorities concluded the documents had been tampered with in a bid to tarnish the joint venture.

“We found from the forensic aspect that the leaked data downloaded by the former executive with malicious intent… to distort facts about the transaction between 1MDB and PetroSaudi and the leaked data was published in Sarawak Report and The Edge.

“And since we are responsible to monitor any publication that gets its licences from [the Home Ministry] so we feel that they will have to bear full responsibility to face any action if they were found to have cherry-picked or were selective or intentionally distorting facts with bad intentions,” Zahid reportedly said.

Zahid also urged the Malaysian Communication Multimedia Commission to investigate and act against Sarawak Report, the whistleblower website that published the alleged leaked email correspondence between 1MDB and PetroSaudi.

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The Edge which previously was regarded as a premier business paper has often been talked about as a paper with an agenda. However, in the matters pertaining 1MDB, the connotation and how the stories were skewed is pointing in the direction of the political agenda to topple Prime Minister Najib.

Highlighting with the intention to perpetuate doubt and distrust

Highlighting with the intention to perpetuate doubt and distrust

The paper create doubts, angle the rhetorics and echoing lies and fabricated information to point that something amiss and perhaps irregular is happening and this is condoned by the BoD.

Example is 1MDB statement about the treatment of 1MDB investments in Penang and Selangor yesterday.

The Malay Mail Online story:

The Edge: 1MDB claim of ready buyers for Air Itam, Pulau Indah land reeks of LTH fumble

Wednesday July 1, 2015
09:57 AM GMT+8
KUALA LUMPUR, July 1 ― A local business daily today questioned 1Malaysia Development Berhad’s (1MDB) claim of “significant expressions of interest” in its land parcels in Air Itam and Pulau Indah, equating it to Lembaga Tabung Haji’s (LTH) still-unfulfilled claim that it would pull in profit from a controversial land purchase from 1MDB.

The Edge Financial Daily said in an editorial piece that it is unknown if 1MDB has received actual proposals to buy the two land parcels or if the latter’s executive director, Arul Kanda Kandasamy, was merely announcing that they will name an independent consultant in the next two weeks.

“Is 1MDB saying buyers for the Air Itam and Pulau Indah land will be named within two weeks?” the paper asked.

“Otherwise, can anyone be blamed for thinking that the statement sounds all too similar to the one made by Lembaga Tabung Haji chairman Datuk Seri Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim on the ready buyers available for the pilgrims’ fund’s controversial RM188.5 million purchase of the 0.63ha Signature Tower land in the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX)?

“Did Abdul Azeez not say Tabung Haji was expected to make at least RM5 million profits when the land sale competed as early as end-May? The last we checked, a buyer has not been named,” the paper added.

The Edge said the least 1MDB can do is name the consultant that they should have already hired to evaluate the “significant expressions of interest” the state-owned firm claims the two land parcels have received, to lend credence to Arul Kanda’s statement yesterday.

The business daily said this is especially needed in the case of the Air Itam plot, on which 1MDB spent RM1.056 billion for a majority stake in 234 acres of encumbered land from private owners, including from associates of Penang tycoon Tan Sri Lim Gait Tong.

Despite owning most of the land, 1MDB would still need to get the buy in from the estimated 1,200 ground tenants on the Air Itam plot, which could potentially work out to some RM108 million in compensation payment, the paper added.

“Would any third party want to jump into the fray if there is no assurance of a settlement with these ground tenants who are not mere squatters?” The Edge queried.

The paper also raised questions over the status of the 310-acre Pulau Indah land, noting that there has not been any news of 1MDB finalising the RM294.378 million price to buy the plot from Tadmax Resources Bhd.

“The sale was supposed to be completed yesterday, according to Tadmax’s December 16, 2014 statement. At the time of writing, there was no update on whether the deal has been completed,” it said.

Debt-riddled 1MDB announced yesterday it has received “significant” proposals to buy two large parcels of land in Selangor and Penang even as critics question the state-owned investment’s purchase of them.

In a statement, Arul Kanda said the Cabinet had been informed of the company’s intention to “monetise” its land in Pulau Indah, Selangor and Air Itam, Penang through joint ventures or outright sales on February 15 this year.

Arul Kanda added that the company will appoint an independent real estate consultant to review the proposals and will provide an update of the development in the next two weeks.

1MDB’s announcement came after opposition MP Tony Pua questioned the real estate deals, in particular the 310-acre land in Pulau Indah the company bought for RM282 million from Tadmax Resources Bhd, after securing a US$150-million (RM540 million) loan from Export Import (EXIM) Bank.

The DAP MP has suggested that the transaction was a front to bail out troubled government-linked companies, pointing out that Tadmax was formerly known as Wijaya Baru Global Bhd before November 2013, and that Wijaya was known for its involvement in the RM12.5 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal.

– See more at: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/the-edge-1mdb-claim-of-ready-buyers-for-air-itam-pulau-indah-land-reeks-of#sthash.iovjFjcW.dpuf

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Home Ministry and MCMC should also extend the investigation to other media organisation under Tong Kooi Ong’s sty, which include BFM radio station.

The concept of freedom of expression does not tantamount of the liberty to perpetuate lies and cause discomfort and even anguish amongst the general public and compound a distrust against the government.

That is nothing but sinister and such sinister agenda isn’t actually moving the nation forward, even from the perspective of universal values.

 

Published in: on July 1, 2015 at 15:45  Comments (10)  

Summertime

Fitch reversed its initial ratings projection on Malaysia and unequivocally attest to the sound fundamentals in the Malaysian economy and fiscal policies.

Bloomberg story:

Malaysia Escapes Fitch Downgrade on Improvement in Finances

by Y-Sing Liau
July 1, 2015 — 1:51 AM HKT Updated on July 1, 2015 — 10:29 AM HKT

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Fitch Ratings maintained Malaysia’s credit ranking at the fourth-lowest investment grade after signaling a downgrade earlier this year, saying finances are improving and growth remains steady. Stocks and the ringgit rose.
The outlook on the nation’s A- grade was revised to stable from negative, Fitch said in a statement Tuesday. A new consumption tax and fuel subsidy reforms are supportive of Malaysia’s finances even as federal government debt and explicit guarantees continue to increase, it said.
Concerns Malaysia could be downgraded for the first time since the Asian financial crisis have hurt sentiment in its asset markets with the currency near the weakest in a decade. Fitch had repeatedly warned contingent liabilities such as rising debt at a state investment company were weighing on the rating, contributing to investors souring on the country.
“Malaysia’s rating remains supported by reasonably strong real GDP growth rates and low inflation volatility,” Fitch said. “Fitch views progress on the Goods and Services Tax and fuel subsidy reform as supportive of the fiscal finances. A further narrowing of the deficit is forecast in 2015 despite lower oil prices.”
Malaysian stocks jumped the most in more than two years Wednesday, with the benchmark index climbing as much as 1.8 percent. The currency rose 0.8 percent to 3.7420 against the U.S. dollar as of 10:18 a.m. local time, data compiled by Bloomberg show. It was the worst performer in Asia in the first six months of 2015 and traded close to 3.8 this week, the level at which it was pegged from 1998 until 2005.
Differing Outlooks
Fitch lowered Malaysia’s outlook to negative in 2013, citing weaker prospects for public finances. Moody’s Investors Service and Standard & Poor’s also rank Malaysia at their fourth-lowest investment grades. Moody’s has a positive outlook, while S&P’s is stable.
Andrew Colquhoun, Fitch’s head of Asia Pacific sovereign ratings, warned in March that there was more than a 50 percent chance of a downgrade. The Southeast Asian nation would “sit more naturally in the BBB range,” he said March 18.
The ratings affirmation gives Prime Minister Najib Razak more time to improve the country’s public finances, which have been weighed down by rising debt at state investment company 1Malaysia Development Bhd. and a decline in oil revenue.
1MDB’s borrowings amounted to 41.9 billion ringgit ($11.2 billion) as of March 2014 in part for the purchase of power plants and land. As the company’s troubled finances threatened Malaysia’s rating, Najib faced calls from former premier Mahathir Mohamad to step down as leader because of the performance of 1MDB, whose advisory board he chairs.
Sovereign Support
“Fitch continues to believe that the Malaysian sovereign is incurring additional contingent liabilities beyond explicit guarantees because of quasi-fiscal operations of state-owned entity 1MDB,” it said. “Fitch thinks there is a high probability that sovereign support for 1MDB would be forthcoming if needed.”
The decline in oil prices over the past year and the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates are also adding to pressure on the ringgit. Malaysia is an exporter of crude and derives about 22 percent of government revenue from energy-related sources.
Najib has trimmed expectations for expansion this year as his government cut expenditure amid lower-than-expected income from oil. The economy is forecast to grow 4.5 percent to 5.5 percent in 2015.
While Southeast Asia’s third-largest economy has run a fiscal deficit since 1998, the gap as a percent of gross domestic product has been narrowing. To boost state coffers, Najib scrapped a decades-old fuel subsidy policy in December and started a 6 percent goods and services tax in April.
The prime minister seeks a balanced budget by 2020 from a deficit target of 3.2 percent this year.

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This is what Fitch thought on the Malaysian economy let year:

Bonds | Wed Jul 23, 2014 7:28am EDT Related: CURRENCIES, BONDS, MARKETS, FINANCIALS


Fitch Affirms Malaysia at ‘A-‘, Outlook Remains Negative


(The following statement was released by the rating agency) HONG KONG/LONDON, July 23 (Fitch) Fitch Ratings has affirmed Malaysia’s Long-Term Foreign and Local Currency Issuer Default Ratings at ‘A-‘ and ‘A’ respectively. The issue ratings on Malaysia’s senior unsecured local currency bonds are also affirmed at ‘A’. The Outlooks on the Long-Term IDRs remain Negative. The Country Ceiling is affirmed at ‘A’ and the Short-Term Foreign Currency IDR at ‘F2’.

KEY RATING DRIVERS The affirmation of Malaysia’s IDRs with Negative Outlooks reflects the following key rating drivers:- – Public finances are Malaysia’s key sovereign credit weakness and remain a source of downward pressure on the ratings. Federal government (FG) debt stood at 54.7% of GDP by end-2013, above the median of 50% for the ‘A’ rating category.

Malaysia’s FG debt ratio rose 14.9 points over 2008-2013, above the median increase of 12 points for the ‘A’ rating category. FG-guaranteed debt rose to 15.9% of GDP at end-2013 from 15.2% at end-2012 and 9% at end-2008. Taken together, explicit FG debt plus guarantees stood at 70.6% at end-2013, up from 48.8% at end-2008. – The government has set out a path of budget deficit targets, which, if followed, would stabilise and eventually reduce the headline FG debt ratio. The government targets a 3% deficit (on its definitions) in 2015, down from 3.5% in 2014 and 3.9% in 2013.

However, the path to achievement of the targets remains unclear. In particular, the shape of a new goods and services tax (GST), to be introduced in April 2015, has yet to be fully determined. The GST by itself is unlikely to deliver the targeted reduction in the deficit and additional revenue or spending measures would probably be required. It remains to be seen whether these will materialise. – Sustained heavy public sector deficits could increase the chances of the current account moving into deficit, which in turn could increase the possibility of disruptive volatility in portfolio capital flows.

The current account surplus as a proportion of GDP declined from an average 13% per year over 2003-2012 to 3.7% in 2013. Fitch projects the surplus to remain in the low single digits over 2014-16. Malaysia has experienced a decline in the savings rate and a rise in the investment rate driven partly by government deficits and partly by the Economic Transformation Programme, a government-led effort to raise investment. – High and rising household debt risks magnifying the impact of any future increase in macroeconomic volatility on the credit profile. Household debt rose to 86.8% of GDP at end-2013, up from 81.3% at end-2012 and 60.4% at end-2008, and above the US’s level (80.6% in 1Q14).

The central bank has warned that easy monetary conditions could lead to a broader build-up of economic and financial imbalances. The banking system indicator of ‘bbb’ is in line with rating peers. The net impaired loan ratio declined to 1.3% in 2013 from 1.4% in 2012, and the system’s common Tier 1 equity was 12.1% at end-May 2014. – Fitch believes contingent liabilities on the sovereign are rising beyond officially acknowledged debt and guarantees. The non-financial public sector ran a consolidated deficit of 13.6% of GDP in 2013, fuelled by 13.2% of GDP in capital spending by non-financial public enterprises. The government projects the deficit at 9.4% in 2014. Outside formally guaranteed debt, the state-owned investment vehicle 1MDB had further debt of 3% of 2013 GDP by March 2013, according to its published statements.

Despite the lack of formal guarantee, Fitch thinks there is a high probability that sovereign support for 1MDB would be forthcoming if needed. – Malaysia’s credit profile is supported by the high share of local currency denominated debt (97% of total debt at end-March 2014), and by relatively well-developed local capital markets and the high domestic savings rate, which support sovereign funding conditions. The share of domestic government securities held by non-residents was 26.8% at end-March 2014, although this figure has been stable in a range of 24%-28% since end-2011.

Local bidders, including the state Employee Provident Fund, could potentially buffer any volatility in foreign participation, although a withdrawal of foreign capital could still be temporarily disruptive and could drive a decline in foreign reserves. – The external finances remain a sovereign credit strength, notwithstanding diminishing current account surpluses. Malaysia’s net external creditor position of 29.6% of GDP at end-2013 exceeded the ‘A’ median of 10.8%.

Malaysia has experienced an unbroken run of annual current account surpluses since 1998. Official foreign reserves of USD134.9bn were worth 6.1 months of current external payments at end-2013, against a median 4.4 months for the ‘A’ range. The sovereign’s own net foreign assets were worth 19.7% of GDP at end-2013, exceeding the ‘A’ median of 12.8%. These factors provide important buffers given Malaysia’s higher export commodity dependence than peers (31% in 2013 against the ‘A’ median of 18%). – Malaysia’s average income level (at market exchange rates), broader level of development, and World Bank governance indicators are weaker than ‘A’ category medians and closer to ‘BBB’ category norms. These structural features weigh on the credit profile.

However, Malaysia’s relatively favourable demographic outlook supports medium-term growth prospects. – Malaysia’s real GDP growth is expected to average 5.6% per year over 2010-2014, well ahead of the ‘A’ median (3.5%). The level and volatility of inflation are in line with the ‘A’ median. Assessment of the strength of Malaysia’s macroeconomic performance is qualified by the contribution from large public sector deficits and rising private-sector leverage. Public investment contributed 1.5pp of 2012’s 5.6% growth rate, although official data indicate the contribution eased to 0.2pp of 2013’s 4.7% growth.

RATING SENSITIVITIES The Negative Outlooks reflect the following risk factors that may, individually or collectively, result in a downgrade of the ratings: – Fiscal slippage relative to the government’s targets and lack of progress on structural budgetary reform – Further rapid growth in FG guaranteed debt or other contingent liabilities – Emergence of “twin deficits” where failure to consolidate the public finances is associated with the emergence of a sustained current account deficit – A shock to interest rates or employment sufficient to impair household debt servicing capacity, leading to problems for the banking system – A shock to foreign investor confidence in Malaysia that leads to capital outflows on a scale that impairs Malaysia’s sovereign external balance sheet (via foreign reserves depletion) or proves disruptive for economic and financial stability. Given the Negative Outlooks, Fitch’s sensitivity analysis does not currently anticipate developments with a material likelihood of leading to a rating upgrade. However, future developments that may, individually or collectively, result in a revision of the Outlooks to Stable include: – Further progress towards achieving the government’s interim 3% deficit target by 2015 – Greater confidence in the authorities’ commitment to containment of direct and indirect public indebtedness in future KEY ASSUMPTIONS – Evolution of the global economy broadly in line with the projections in Fitch’s June “Global Economic Outlook”; in particular, the ratings assume a continued gradual recovery in the advanced economies and that China avoids a slowdown to a low single digit growth rate; and that oil prices do not decline substantially – No escalation of regional or global geopolitical disputes to a level that disrupts trade and financial flows – Maintenance of basic political and social stability in Malaysia Contact: Primary Analyst Andrew Colquhoun Senior Director +852 2263 9938 Fitch Ratings (Hong Kong) Ltd. 2801, Tower Two, Lippo Centre 89 Queensway, Hong Kong Secondary Analyst Santiago Mosquera Director +1 (212) 908 0271 Committee Chairperson Paul Rawkins Senior Director +44 20 3530 1046 Media Relations: Wai-Lun Wan, Hong Kong, Tel: +852 2263 9935, Email: wailun.wan@fitchratings.com. Additional information is available on http://www.fitchratings.com Applicable criteria, ‘Sovereign Rating Criteria’ dated 13 August 2012 and ‘Country Ceilings’ dated 09 August 2013, are available at http://www.fitchratings.com. Applicable Criteria and Related Research: Sovereign Rating Criteria here Country Ceilings here Additional Disclosure Solicitation Status here

ALL FITCH CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CERTAIN LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS. PLEASE READ THESE LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK: here. IN ADDITION, RATING DEFINITIONS AND THE TERMS OF USE OF SUCH RATINGS ARE AVAILABLE ON THE AGENCY’S PUBLIC WEBSITE ‘WWW.FITCHRATINGS.COM’. PUBLISHED RATINGS, CRITERIA AND METHODOLOGIES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THIS SITE AT ALL TIMES. FITCH’S CODE OF CONDUCT, CONFIDENTIALITY, CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AFFILIATE FIREWALL, COMPLIANCE AND OTHER RELEVANT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE FROM THE ‘CODE OF CONDUCT’ SECTION OF THIS SITE. FITCH MAY HAVE PROVIDED ANOTHER PERMISSIBLE SERVICE TO THE RATED ENTITY OR ITS RELATED THIRD PARTIES. DETAILS OF THIS SERVICE FOR RATINGS FOR WHICH THE LEAD ANALYST IS BASED IN AN EU-REGISTERED ENTITY CAN BE FOUND ON THE ENTITY SUMMARY PAGE FOR THIS ISSUER ON THE FITCH WEBSITE.

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Invariably, the confidence on Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak’s administration and policies to move the economy forward with existing Transformation Agenda coupled with the recently tabled 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP) and 1MDB restructuring plans approved by Cabinet late May, brought upon these revisions of stance.

Published in: on July 1, 2015 at 12:15  Comments (1)