Connect with us


ASEAN should use the power of its 650 million people – Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad




“The 94 year old Malaysian leader also discussed secrets behind his longevity.”

94 year old Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad says that the 10 ASEAN countries should find ways to better use their 650 million population to spur their economies in the digital age.

“Despite its huge combined population, ASEAN has still failed to create an effective domestic market the way China has successfully done.”

Speaking at the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit 2019 in Bangkok today, the Malaysian leader commented that, one reason why China has been able to transform itself from a poor country to become an economic power in a span of just only four decades, is because it has been successful in harnessing the potential of its huge population of 1.3 billion.

“China has made use of its population by turning it into a huge domestic market. Digital technology has in large parts contributed to China’s extraordinary economic growth.

“ASEAN has 650 million people but has not performed the way we should.”

Mahathir suggested that ASEAN countries join hands to empower the huge population into a domestic market.

“Now we are entering the fourth industrial revolution which should help us grow much faster than before. Communication helps us know what each other wants so that we can invest to provide for these needs.”

Mahathir said there is also a need to educate peoples in ASEAN about the importance of digital economy. He said while China is already doing away with cash, ASEAN countries have yet to make their peoples fully understand the potential of digitalisation.

“If we understand the new technologies and make use of them, our economy will grow faster.”

Mahathir also called on ASEAN countries to unite and speak with one voice on trade and other issues affecting them. In a thinly veiled slash at US President Trump, Mahathir said leaders in developed countries “have resorted to protectionism, making it even more imperative for countries in the region to have a common stand on trade issues”.

Power of One

“We need to speak in one language. Before any international gathering, we should discuss our common stand and stick to it. Always try to speak with one voice. If you go alone, you will be bullied.”

Asked about the on-going trade war between the US and China, Mahathir said that in a worst-case scenario if US President Donald Trump is re-elected, it could prolong for another five years. However, he noted that many Americans are not happy with President Trump’s policies and may make their voices heard in the next presidential election.

The 94 year old Malaysian leader also discussed secrets behind his longevity. He said it all boils down to people’s eating habit. He said the older people get, the more careful they should be about what they eat and how much they eat.

“My suggestion is that when you find your food tasty, just stop eating. You eat to live, not live to eat,” he said, adding that staying physically and mentally active is also very important.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

If you have story ideas, a restaurant to review, an event to cover or an issue to discuss, contact The Thaiger editorial staff.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Koh Samui1 hour ago

Koh Samui unaccustomed to Covid-19, many act in dismay

Thailand3 hours ago

Bangkok Airways extends flight suspension to August 11

Thailand4 hours ago

7 Jomtien Beach curfew breakers arrested

Sponsored1 day ago

Experience Phuket’s Islands with 5 Star Marine

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Thailand5 hours ago

Buri Ram pig stable converted into gambling den: 22 arrests follow

Thailand6 hours ago

“Fake news” banned, Thai media say order infringes on freedoms

Phuket6 hours ago

Precarious Phuket: open internationally, closed domestically

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Best of6 hours ago

Top 5 tattoo parlours Bangkok

World7 hours ago

Duterte approves lockdown measures for Manila

Best of7 hours ago

The Best Pizza in Bangkok with Delivery

Thailand7 hours ago

Thailand News Today | worker camp woes, ‘fake news’ crackdown | July 30

Best of7 hours ago

Best Premium Hotel Buffets in Bangkok

Coronavirus (Covid-19)7 hours ago

CCSA considers extending restrictions in “dark red” zones for another 14 days

Thailand8 hours ago

Fake dead bodies used in Phuket protest, police plan real investigation

Best of8 hours ago

Top 5 adventure tours in Chiang Mai

Best of8 hours ago

Top 5 affordable hotels in Chiang Mai

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism5 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8