By Nik Mohamed Rashid Nik Zurin and Liew Chin Tong Dato’ Sri Ismail Sabri recently outlined his vision of Malaysia’sContinue Reading
With the nation battling the pandemic and trying to recover from the economic slowdown, we can expect that the healthcare and social protection systems will be the main focus of this year’s budget. This is understandable, given the direct effects of the virus crisis on livelihoods and health. However, the existing budget is already underfunding the Malaysian Armed Forces’ core obligatory operations, notwithstanding commitments to increase readiness and capabilities and expanded operational demands due to the pandemic.
The Kerangka Keberhasilan Kementerian is a mixed bag. By establishing a clear hierarchy of ideas, it gives us relevant insights about the substantive and practical matters that the Ministry and the Armed Forces has to address in their portfolio. However, it falls extremely short when it comes to correctly measuring or estimating the real impact of the various programs and activities. Thus, in its role in assessing the performance of the Ministry, it is not so useful as a framework.
We learn that the defence budget is shaped around two general categories of expenditures – Operating (specifically, Supply) and Development Expenditures. We also learn that the general trend for the last five years has seen defence spending hover around RM13 to RM15 billion. Finally, the reader has some idea of who the primary stakeholders the Ministry is, in effect, serving: the rakyat, foreign diplomatic missions, veterans and military pensioners, members of the defence industry, and some private sector and non-government entities.
What does the Defence Budget tell us? Are we spending too much, just enough, or too little on national defence? Which programs should be prioritized over others? This series of articles will break down the formatting and the structure of the Defence Budget.
Malaysia was founded on 16th September 1963, and will be 57 years old day. It is a traditional practice to also celebrate Armed Forces Day on the same date. The Malaysian Armed Forces is 87 years old, marking its birth with the formation of the Experimental Company of native Malay soldiers in 1933. The Experimental Company would then form the basis of the Royal Malay Regiment, which is the oldest infantry regiment in the Malaysian Armed Forces.