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Zi Liang Wee

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Hailing from the island of Penang, Zi Liang studied political economy at the University of Pennsylvania, graduating with a BA in 2014. He went on to earn the Master of Economic Management from Universiti Sains Malaysia. As a proud disciple of Daisaku Ikeda, Zi Liang firmly believes in the critical role of ASEAN and other multilateral organizations in advancing world peace and prosperity.

Singapore trims 2020 GDP forecast as virus poses recession risk

On Monday, Singapore cut its growth forecast for 2020 as the country struggles with one of the highest numbers of coronavirus cases outside mainland China. The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) expects the Singapore economy to expand by around 0.5% this year. MTI downgraded its...

Malaysia’s Q4 economic growth slowest in a decade

Malaysia’s economy expanded 3.6 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier—the slowest pace in a decade.  The slowdown is due to the lower output of palm oil, crude oil and natural gas, and a decline in exports amid the Sino-US trade war. The COVID-19 outbreak in...

Southeast Asian central banks roll out anti-virus measures

Four central banks in Southeast Asia signaled aggressive policy action this week to curtail the impact of the new coronavirus. The central banks are from Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand.  The Bank of Thailand (BoT) slashed its benchmark interest rate Wednesday to a historic low of 1%. The BoT’s...

Indonesia takes ‘bold’ steps to guard rupiah from virus

Indonesia’s central bank is taking “bold” steps to protect the nation’s currency and bonds against the economic impact of the novel coronavirus. Bank Indonesia is intervening in the bond, currency, and non-deliverable forwards markets to defend the rupiah. Nanang Hendarsah, the central bank’s executive director for...

Cambodia’s economy to grow 7.1 percent in 2020

Singapore-based ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) projected robust growth in the Cambodian economy this year despite stronger external headwinds. “Real GDP (gross domestic product) growth is forecast to moderate to a more sustainable rate of 7.1 percent in 2019 and 2020, supported by robust construction activities, strong...

Vietnam’s GDP growth forecast robust for 2020

Vietnam could expect a GDP growth rate of 6.76 percent this year, according to the National Center for Socio-Economic Information and Forecast (NCIF) under the Ministry of Planning and Investment. How much the Vietnamese economy could pull ahead, however, would largely depend on the global...

Moody’s assigns first-time issuer rating of B3 to Laos

American credit rating agency Moody’s has given a B3 rating with a positive outlook to the Government of Laos, citing the country’s high economic growth potential. However, the rating agency pointed out that the country’s weak executive institutions, limited transparency, and small economy could be...

MACC reveals audio recordings involving former M’sian premier Najib Razak

Last Wednesday (Jan 8), the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) released nine audio recordings involving the nation’s former premier Najib Razak. MACC Chief Commissioner Latheefa Koya denounced the recordings as a “criminal conspiracy at the highest level.” The conversations in the 45-minute audio recordings took place...

Malaysia offers to help fight Australia bushfires

Malaysia has offered to help Australia combat its deadly bushfires, which have killed at least 24 people and a billion animals. Deputy Prime Minister Dr. Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said the assistance includes deploying the National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma) and Special Malaysia Disaster Assistance...

U Mobile and StarHub to conduct world’s first 5G SA roaming trials

Malaysia’s U Mobile and Singapore’s StarHub have announced on Monday (Dec 30) that they will be conducting one of the world’s first 5G standalone (5G SA) roaming trials. The 5G SA roaming trials will be carried out solely on 5G without relying on existing 4G...

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