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PM: M'sia needs to build digital economy as important enabler for transformation [ 27-10-2011 ]

PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia needs a solid push and a clear framework to build a digital economy which will be an important enabler for the country's transformation, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He said it was undeniable that the next wave of economic growth would come from the knowledge-based economy, with digital technologies as a key driver of progress. "As a nation, we are entering a crucial phase, as we are now firmly into the decade in which we must achieve our goal," he said in his opening remarks at the launch of the 23rd MSC Malaysia Implementation Council Meeting, here today.

He said Malaysia was placed 36th out of 70 countries in the Digital Economy Ranking 2010 by the Economist Intelligence Unit, up two places from the 38th spot previously.

"The main contributors were a steady improvement in broadband, mobile and internet connectivity, as well as government support," he added.

Najib said in Asia, Malaysia ranked 6th in the Global Information Technology Report 2009-2010, released by the World Economic Forum, coming behind Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan.

"The report commended Malaysia for its outstanding marks in readiness and usage," he said.

He also said he had announced earlier this year at the Global Science and Innovation Advisory Council Meeting in New York, that Malaysia is in the midst of constructing an innovative digital economy framework, that would serve as an additional enabler for its transformation.

"I then gave the mandate to MDeC to visualise and drive the Digital Malaysia framework, which must foster an ecosystem driven by ICT in targeted aspects of the economy, governance and social interaction, and establish a climate that intensifies innovation, investment and talent growth," he added.

He said it is important that Digital Malaysia is seen as a pillar of the transformation programme.

He said this positioning of Digital Malaysia in the National Transformation Policy, was in order to create a cohesive and holistic approach to the digital nation, as it involves and ultimately benefits multiple stakeholders from the public and private sectors as well as citizen groups.

"We have all gathered here today as leaders in our own respective areas. "It is imperative that we all lend our voices, give our support and take necessary action to drive the actualisation of a digital economy, which will spur Malaysia's transformation," he added. - BERNAMA

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