Press Statement: Zeti and the Weakening Ringgit

This morning I did a joint press conference with Dr. Fahmi Ngah on Tan Sri Zeti, the weakening Ringgit and the erosion of investor confidence as a result of the 1MDB scandal.

You can read media coverage of this press conference here and here and the video here.

The PKR Bureau of Investment and Trade releases this statement on of the weakening Ringgit:

Thursday, 6th of August 2015

Press Statement: Zeti and The Weakening Ringgit

KEADILAN is extremely concerned that the Ringgit is continuously dropping against the US dollar. In March 2015, Macquarie Research economist PK Basu stated that the currency could fall to 3.95 to the US dollar by September 2015. Recently, according to a foreign exchange strategist formerly from CIMB and Bank Negara, Dr Suresh Ramanathan said that the Ringgit would remain on the weak side for a long time if it moves above the 3.83 level. That safety level has been breached. As of today, the Ringgit is trading at 3.89 to 1 US dollar. The current market sentiment for the Ringgit is now very low.

In addition, multiple news sources are reporting that Malaysians are stocking up on Singapore dollars as confidence continues to evaporate on the back of political news stemming from the 1MDB scandal.

In particular, KEADILAN is extremely concerned of the police’s intention to investigate Bank Negara Governor, Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz. The police need to declare with no uncertainty on what grounds, will she be investigated and whether it is linked to an alleged conspiracy to remove Dato’ Sri Najib Razak from power and therefore she might be charged for activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy under section 124B of the Penal Code 2012.

It will be extremely unwise to arrest Governor Zeti without full transparency and due process at this most delicate time for the Ringgit. The international financial community including powerful rating agencies look upon Governor Zeti as a positive factor in the economy. If no transparency and due process is afforded, the market will view this as a politically motivated action. This will send all the wrong messages to the world and will further negatively impact the Ringgit.

Therefore KEADILAN urges Dato’ Sri Najib to stop and think before he continues the witch hunts on 1MDB investigators. We urge Najib to think about the wider impact to the economy and the rakyat, and stop neglecting the economy at the expense of his own political survival.

Wong Chen
Member of Parliament for Kelana Jaya
Chairman of the PKR Investment and Trade Bureau
6th August 2015

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Kenyataan Media:Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz dan Penyusutan Mata Wang Ringgit

KEADILAN amat bimbang tentang nilai mata wang Ringgit yang menyusut secara berterusan. Pada Mac 2015, ahli ekonomi Macquarie Research, PK Basu meramalkan nilai mata wang Ringgit Malaysia akan jatuh kepada tahap 3.95 bersamaan 1 dolar AS pada bulan September 2015. Dr Suresh Ramanathan, ahli strategi pertukaran wang asing yang pernah bekerja di CIMB dan Bank Negara, pula menyatakan sekiranya mata wang Ringgit melebihi paras 3.83, ianya akan terancam berpanjangan. Pada hari ini, nilai Ringgit Malaysia berada di tahap 3.89 bersamaan dengan 1 dolar AS. Berdasarkan laporan-laporan kewangan tersebut, jelas nyata sentimen pasaran terhadap Ringgit adalah amat buruk.

Tambahan pula, beberapa akhbar melaporkan bahawa ramai rakyat Malaysia telah mula membeli dan menyimpan mata wang dolar Singapura. Ini disebabkan keyakinan rakyat terus terhakis akibat berita politik tentang skandal 1MDB.

Khususnya, KEADILAN berasa sangat bimbang mengenai berita bahawa pihak polis bercadang untuk menyiasat Gabenor Bank Negara, Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz. Pihak polis perlu membuat satu deklarasi penuh apakah asas penyiasatan yang dicadangkan. Adakah ia berkaitan dengan kononnya satu konspirasi untuk menjatuhkan Dato’ Sri Najib Razak daripada kuasa dan oleh itu, Gabenor Zeti boleh didakwa atas aktiviti-aktiviti menjejaskan demokrasi berparlimen dibawah seksyen 124 Kanun Keseksaan 2012.

Sekiranya tindakan menangkap Gabenor Zeti tidak dilakukan dengan ketelusan penuh dan mengikut prosedur dan proses perundangan, ini akan merupakan suatu tindakan yang tersangat bahaya pada masa mata wang Ringgit begitu lemah. Gabenor Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz mempunyai reputasi yang baik sebagai seorang Gabenor Bank Pusat dalam kalangan komuniti kewangan antarabangsa termasuk agensi penarafan (rating agencies). Sekiranya tidak ada ketelusan penuh dan prosedur dan proses perundangan tidak diikuti, pasaran dunia akan membuat kesimpulan bahawa tindakan polis adalah bermotif politik. Ini akan memberi mesej yang tersangat buruk kepada komuniti kewangan antarabangsa dan akan terus menjejaskan nilai mata wang Ringgit.

PKR menuntut agar Dato’ Sri Najib Razak menghentikan semua penyiasatan terhadap penyiasat 1MDB dan memberi tumpuan penuh kepada pengurusan ekonomi negara. Kami menggesa beliau untuk berhenti mengabaikan ekonomi dan menyengsarakan rakyat demi mempertahankan kedudukan politik beliau sendiri.

WongChen
Ahli Parlimen KelanaJaya
Pengerusi Biro Pelaburan dan Perdagangan PKR
6 Ogos 2015

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