INFRASTRUCTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT IN MALAYSIA
1. Malaysia has achieved substantial success in its rural
development, especially in reducing the incidence of poverty in both rural and urban. In the process, the rural areas have been developed with infrastructures, utility, social amenities, health and school facilities and etc to support the economic development of the country as well as increasing the quality of life of her populace. The productivity and incomes of the rural people, or more specifically the agriculture sector, the mainstay of the rural economy, have steadily increased. Rural development continues to be one of the main focus of the Malaysian Government under the 9
Malaysia Plan (2006 – 1010).
2. More significantly, the development that has taken place since independence in 1957, and especially since the launching of the new Economic Policy (NEP) in 1971, has generated a feeling among a large number of the rural people that they are part of the nation’s growth and modernization process, and that they have not been neglected or marginalized. Needless to say rural development in almost synonymous with poverty eradication.
3. Infrastructure and rural development in Malaysia is part and parcel of a well planned and executed process. At the macro level our national development has always been guided by a series of long term Outline Perspective Plans (OPP). Thus far three OPP’s have been implemented guided consecutively by the philosophy of the New Economic Policy (NEP 1971-1990), the National Development Policy 2 (NDP 1991-2000) and the National Vision Policy (NVP 2001 -2010). These OPP’s are in turn implemented through a series of five year development plans; the current being the Ninth Malaysia Plan (2006- 2010).
Objectives in infrastructure development
4. Four motives have shaped the scale and pattern of the
infrastructure and rural development strategies of the Malaysian Government.
i) Recognizing that efficient and reliable infrastructure
facilities and services were vital to support economic
development of the country. In this regard the objective of the Malaysian Government is to expand infrastructure
facilities to keep abreast of the growing demand for
infrastructure arising from the growth and transformation
of the economy. The avoidance of infrastructure shortages
is thus a paramount aim of the Government. Meeting the
growing demand for infrastructure from the modern sectors
of the economy, including the external sector, is not the
only objective driving the Malaysian Government’s
ii) To develop infrastructure to serve socio-economic ends. Here the focus is on providing infrastructure to promote the development of the less developed regions of the country,
including rural areas. Improving the accessibility of these regions to markets is intended to bring about a more
Source : Various Malaysia Plan3
balanced development of the country and redress economic
iii) Realizing that Malaysian economy will have to further strengthen its competitiveness in the global market,
Malaysia have to develop her human capital and its quality
of life must be addressed. Hence the rural area must be
develop and her people are capable, innovative,
competitive, resilient, flexible and creative as well as
imbued with positive work ethics and spiritual values to
meet the challenges ahead. Education and health facilities
must be given due important in order to achieve the
iv) Recognizing the gap between urban and rural, urban area developed faster than rural; there is a need for the
Government of Malaysia to bridge the disparities between
urban and rural.
Investment in infrastructure and rural development in Malaysia 5. At independence Malaysia had a reasonably good set of
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