• Free Malaysia Today

Wong Chen calls on all to defend PwC report

By FMT Reporters (15 January 2016) PETALING JAYA: Kelana Jaya MP Wong Chen has urged stakeholders to defend the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) cost-benefit report on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) against any attempt by Putrajaya to alter it. In a press statement issued today, he expressed dismay over news that the government was planning to reassess the assumptions that PwC made in preparing the report. He alleged that it was an attempt to “whitewash” or “damage” the report. According to the PwC report, Malaysia’s economic gain would be insignificant if the government went ahead to sign the TPPA.

“It is obvious now that this PwC conclusion does not sit well with PM Najib’s pro-TPPA stance; hence, the bizarre instructions yesterday from Putrajaya to reassess the assumptions,” Wong said. “In the worst case scenario, it may be an attempt to alter the report to somehow produce a more positive economic spin for Najib.”

He pointed out that the report was commissioned “and controlled” by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI). The government, therefore, had no reason to reassess it, he said.

“In fact, it was MITI that fed most of the economic data to PwC and also signed off on the assumptions and the CGE (computable general equilibrium) model used.” He also pointed out that the government had spent millions of tax money to commission the report and had allowed more than a year of study, with countless interviews, voluminous data gathering, and extensive projection modelling being undertaken.

“I find the report to be professionally done and comprehensive without fear or favour,” he said. “To now have PM Najib question the findings is nothing short of unbelievable.

“Therefore, I call upon all members of Parliament, NGOs, all stakeholders, and the general public to be on alert and defend the findings of the PwC report.”