DAP calls on the Cabinet to reconsider the government decision not to allow IMF to publish its report on Malaysia to show a new openness, accountability and transparency


Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang  

(Petaling Jaya, Friday): DAP calls on the Cabinet to reconsider the government decision not to allow the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to publish its report on Malaysia to show a new openness, accountability and transparency in Malaysian governance.

When asked yesterday whether the government would allow the IMF to publish its report on Malaysia, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said he saw no necessity for the report to be published.

He said: "Well, they (the IMF) have come, they have given their reports, the Ministry of Finance has read them, I don’t see why we should publicise anything. IMF’s Mr. Camdessus (its managing director) and the rest have already made their statements and they feel that we are doing the right thing."

The government’s refusal to give permission to IMF to publish its report on Malaysia has mystified Malaysians, who would want to know what the government is trying to hide from the people. Is it because the IMF report contained portions which would be unflattering for Malaysia despite Camdessus’ favourable public comments?

The IMF’s World Economic Outlook 1998 released in Washington early this week, for instance, disagreed with Mahathir with regard to the causes of the Asian economic crisis, pointing out that they were mainly domestic although there were also external factors.

The key domestic factors causing the Asian economic crisis highlighted by the IMF, and virtually ignored by Mahathir in the past 10 months, were:

The IMF World Economic Outlook 1998 also contained a section on the study on the role of the hedge funds in the Asian currency crisis in response to the charges by Mahathir and the Malaysian Government’s request that IMF study the matter. The IMF came out with the conclusion that there was no compelling evidence that hedge funds were the driving cause for the devaluation of Asian currencies.

(17/4/98)


*Lim Kit Siang - Malaysian Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Democratic Action Party Secretary-General & Member of Parliament for Tanjong