Jan 12, 2011

2011 Index of Economic Freedom - Malaysia

"Corruption and a judicial system that remains vulnerable to political influence pose significant challenges to the economic freedom of Malaysia." ~ The Heritage Foundation ~

For over a decade, The Wall Street Journal and The Heritage Foundation, Washington's preeminent think tank, have tracked the march of economic freedom around the world with the influential Index of Economic Freedom.

What is economic freedom?

Economic freedom is the fundamental right of every human to control his or her own labor and property. In an economically free society, individuals are free to work, produce, consume, and invest in any way they please, with that freedom both protected by the state and unconstrained by the state. In economically free societies, governments allow labor, capital and goods to move freely, and refrain from coercion or constraint of liberty beyond the extent necessary to protect and maintain liberty itself.

The World Top Ten Ranking for 2011 Index of Economic Freedom are:

(1) Hong Kong  (2) Singapore (3) Australia (4) New Zealand (5) Switzerland

(6) Canada (7) Ireland (8) Denmark (9) United States (10) Bahrain

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Malaysia No. 53
The averarage total score for Malaysia has increased by 1.5 points to 66.3 out of 100 points ranking 53 out of 179 countries rated for year 2011.

However the biggest drop in points for Malaysia are the score for "Freedom from Corruption" dropping 6 points from 51 in 2010 to 45 for the 2011 Index.

"Corruption is perceived as present. Malaysia ranks 56th out of 180 countries in Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index for 2009, a drop from 2008. The law provides criminal penalties for official corruption, but it has not been implemented effectively, and officials engage in corrupt practices with impunity. The media have reported numerous cases of alleged official corruption."

The next biggest points loss are for the rating on "Property Rights" dropping 5 points from 55 in 2010 to 50 in 2011 citing weakness in the judiciary that is subject to political influence.

"Private property is protected, but the judiciary is subject to political influence. Corporate lawsuits take over a year to file, and many contracts include a mandatory arbitration clause. Despite plans to ratify the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Copyright Treaty and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty, complaints about lax enforcement of intellectual property rights persist, and the manufacture and sale of counterfeit products have led to serious losses for producers of consumer products and pharmaceuticals."

For Full Report of the 2011 World Index of Economic Freedom go HERE
Report on Malaysia Economic Freedom HERE
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