Press release

14 May 2024

EY C-suite Forum 2024 discusses key strategies for Malaysia to achieve economic resilience

The EY C-suite Forum 2024 was successfully concluded last week. The half-day event saw insightful discussions among industry leaders, regulators and members of the Government aimed at navigating complexities and seizing opportunities in Malaysia's economic landscape.

Related topics Tax

The EY C-suite Forum 2024 was successfully concluded last week. The half-day event saw insightful discussions among industry leaders, regulators and members of the Government aimed at navigating complexities and seizing opportunities in Malaysia's economic landscape. 

This year’s Forum featured dialogues with Yang Berhormat (YB) Senator Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan, Minister of Finance II at Ministry of Finance, Yang Berbahagia (YBhg) Datuk Dr. Abu Tariq Jamaluddin, CEO and Director General of Inland Revenue Board (HASiL), and Dr. Apurva Sanghi, World Bank Lead Economist for Malaysia. These sessions were moderated by YBhg Dato’ Abdul Rauf Rashid, Malaysia Managing Partner, Ernst & Young PLT; Farah Rosley, Malaysia Tax Leader, Ernst & Young Tax Consultants Sdn Bhd; and Chow Sang Hoe, Malaysia Consulting Leader, Ernst & Young Consulting Sdn Bhd.

YB Senator Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan, who was the Guest of Honor, reiterated the Government’s strong commitment to enacting economic and fiscal reforms, in order to build resilience, encourage sustainable growth and boost Malaysia’s competitiveness in the region.

He said, “Malaysia's fiscal policies play a pivotal role in strengthening the foundations of our economy amidst evolving global dynamics. Through the Ekonomi Madani framework and strategic fiscal reforms, we are confident in driving Malaysia towards its intended growth trajectory.”

During his dialogue with Dato’ Abdul Rauf Rashid, he explained that Ekonomi Madani has two key focus: “raising the ceiling” by making the economic pie larger; and “raising the floor” by increasing social protection for the rakyat

He also pointed out some reforms that the current government has introduced, which are in line with “raising the ceiling” to create fiscal space and reducing financial burden over time, such as adjusting electricity and water tariffs.

YB Senator Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan explained that these savings can be deployed into “raising the floor” levers such as building better infrastructure and providing better healthcare and education for a better Malaysia.

He adds that the government has been working closely with the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment to find ways to increase foreign direct investments and domestic direct investments by matching local investors to foreign investors with suitable opportunities

YB Senator Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan said the government is also relooking further refinement of the investment mandates of government-linked companies (GLCs) and government-linked investment companies (GLICs) and creating mechanisms so that these entities can be more strategic and exercise greater influence in their foreign investments; and steer more impact-driven domestic investments.

When discussing tax administration and latest developments in Malaysia, Farah Rosley said, “Recent tax developments, such as e-Invoicing for example, will play important roles in increasing compliance in tax reporting and supporting the digitalization of the overall tax administration system. This will also support the economic ecosystem. Through targeted reforms and incentives, we are strengthening the investment climate, driving economic growth, and ensuring Malaysia remains an attractive destination for foreign and domestic investors.”

In that same session with Farah, Datuk Dr. Abu Tariq Jamaluddin, Chief Executive Officer of the Inland Revenue Board (HASiL) took the opportunity to encourage taxpayers to join HASiL’s Tax Corporate Governance Program, a voluntary program aimed to increase cooperative compliance that will go into full effect on 1 July 2024.

He said, “Managing tax risks is also part of good governance. Corporations, therefore, should have a tax control framework in place which identifies and assesses tax risks; and establishes actions to mitigate the risks.” He also added that taxpayers can expect better tax certainty through the program and that it is a good platform for the tax authority to foster better relationships with taxpayers.

Separately, when speaking to Chow Sang Hoe about the country’s economic outlook, Dr. Apurva Sanghi highlighted the top three investment drivers for Malaysia: stable macro policies, robust physical and digital infrastructure, and talent. He specifically emphasized the need to address the country’s 40% 'learning poverty' rate – a 2023 finding by the World Bank, revealing the number of Malaysian children who lack the ability to read or understand simple text by the age of 10.

The EY C-suite Forum is a flagship event by EY in Malaysia that was launched in 2014. This forum, held annually, aims at driving dialogue and collaboration between the Government and Corporate Malaysia towards building a stronger, more resilient Malaysian economy. The forum provides a platform for leaders to share pertinent insights and have meaningful discourse to shape policies and strategies for sustainable economic growth and collective prosperity. 



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