Who Owns Corporate Malaysia Now?:
Ownership and Control of Government-Linked Investment Companies — Prof. Edmund Terence Gomez
This lecture reviews the evolving nature of state-business relations through a historical analysis of Malaysia’s seven government-linked investment companies (GLICs), including Khazanah Nasional and the Employees Provident Fund, that are key actors in all sectors of the economy.
These GLICs, which serve as sovereign wealth funds and savings-based institutions that vary significantly in terms of their size and objectives, own and control a large number of private and publicly-listed companies through complex pyramid-type organizational structures. The government, under different Prime Ministers, has employed these GLICs in the economy and in the corporate sector in different ways. Abdul Razak initiated their active involvement in the economy through his interventionist New Economic Policy.
Mahathir Mohamad stressed privatization that entailed the divestment of the GLICs’ corporate assets to businesspeople through a system of selective patronage to create corporate captains. A number of these companies were re-nationalized after the 1997 Asian currency crisis.
Abdullah Ahmad Badawi introduced a transformation plan in 2005 to improve efficiency within GLICs that had become owners of Malaysia’s leading publicly-listed companies. Najib Razak actively uses the GLICs to drive economic growth while also encouraging them to invest in the economies of developing countries.
A network mapping of the GLICs’ ownership and control of Malaysia’s top 100 publicly-listed companies will be provided to show the extent of their presence in the corporate sector. The political implications of the GLICs’ significant presence in the corporate sector will be assessed.
This lecture is jointly hosted by the University of Malaya’s Faculty of Economics & Administration and IDEAS, the Institute for Democracy & Economic Affairs.
Date: Thursday, 21 July 2016
Venue: Lecture Theatre 3, Faculty of Economics & Administration, University of Malaya
Edmund Terence Gomez is Professor of Political Economy at the Faculty of Economics & Administration, University of Malaya. Recently, he was appointed as the Senior Fellow at IDEAS. He specializes in state-market relations and the linkages between politics, policies and business development. His international publications include Malaysia’s Political Economy: Politics, Patronage and Profits (Cambridge University Press, 1997), Political Business in East Asia (Routledge, 2002),The Politics of Resource Extraction: Indigenous Peoples, Multinational Corporations and the State (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2012) and Government-Linked Companies and Sustainable, Equitable Development (Routledge, 2015). He is also Senior Fellow at IDEAS.
Post event news coverage: The changing face of corporate Malaysia [23 Jul 2016]