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A Global Entrepreneurship Week Event

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Present A Forum:

“Engineering a High Value, High Income Economy in Malaysia”

Malaysia, by many measures is a successful developing nation. Over the last 30 years, Malaysia has developed from an agrarian economy into a successful industrial economy. With average GDP growth rates of 8% per annum from 1980 to 1998, we have grown in leaps and bounds. However, since the 1997 Asian financial crisis, growth has moderated to below 5% with two recessions over the last 12 years. With stiff competition for Foreign Direct Investment from our neighbors and the world’s focus on the larger Asian economies of China, India, Vietnam and Indonesia (CIVI economies), Malaysia is increasingly facing greater challenges in not just attracting FDI but also in attracting talent to its shores.

In terms of per capita incomes, while Malaysia has seen some growth, compared to other nations that had similar incomes to Malaysia’s 30 years ago, like South Korea and Taiwan, our per capita income growth has been dismal. Today South Korea and Taiwan have PCI that are 2 to 3 times that of Malaysia. Hence despite solid GDP growth rates the income levels of the population are extremely low compared to East Asian nations and even our neighbors Singapore. Hence economic growth has not translated into income growth for its citizens.

Malaysia is also stuck in a very difficult spot. While our income levels are not high, they are still higher than the fast growing CIVI economies which have much larger populations. Hence we are no longer price competitive when it comes to attracting FDI. With larger populations, nations like India and China also have a large talent base that are increasingly being better educated and trained. Furthermore, many of Malaysia’s best brains leave the country for greater opportunities elsewhere. It is a well known fact that a significant number of executives in the financial services industry in Singapore are Malaysians. They are there for many reasons but one factor that attracts them is the higher pay in Singapore which can be 5 times more than what they can earn in Malaysia.

Malaysia can no longer be complacent and expect the economy to grow organically. If it continues at the same pace based on a low income, low value economy, very soon we will be overtaken by our neighbors and we will no longer be seen as an important economy in Asia. That would be disastrous for Malaysia.

Faced with this challenge, the current administration has deemed it necessary to reengineer the Malaysian economy from a low value, low income economy into a high value, high income economy. The question is how do we do this? What can and must be done? We cannot ask if it can be done, we must instead find ways and means of ensuring that it is done. For Malaysians failure is not an option.

This forum will discuss this issue and seeks to share ideas and opinions from a distinguished panel of speakers including our special guest panelist Mr. Michael Levin, Entrepreneur in Residence at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, USA.

Join us for a unique GEW Forum and Networking event:

Date: 16th November 2009 (Monday)


Time: 10.00 am – 12.30 pm


Venue: KMP Plug & Play Centre, 7.01, Level 7, The Gardens South Tower

Mid Valley City, Lingkaran Syed Putra,59200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


Participating Fee: Free with registration.




Or cut & paste this link into your browser:–engineering-a-high-value-high-income-economy-in-malaysia

If you still have trouble registering online please email Dr. Siva



Time Agenda
10.00 – 10.30 am REGISTRATION & NETWORKING (Refreshments Provided)
10.30 – 10.40 am WELCOMING REMARKS

By: Ms. Renuka Sena, Chief Explorer, Proficeo Consultants

Mr. B. Dhakshinamoorthy (Dash), CEO, Warisan Global,

Country Host GEW Malaysia



By: Dr. V. Sivapalan


10.50 – 11.00 am Remarks by Mr Michael Levin


11.00 – 11.10 am Dato’ Hafsah Hashim, CEO, SME Corporation


11.10 – 11.20 am Prof. Rajah Rasiah, Professor, Faculty of Economics & Administration,

University Malaya

(awaiting confirmation)

11.20 – 11.30 am Tan Sri Emeritus. Prof. Augustine Ong, Senior Fellow,

Academy of Sciences Malaysia

(awaiting confirmation)

11.30 – 12.10 pm Panel Discussion

Moderator: Dr. V. Sivapalan


12.10 – 12.20 pm Forum Question & Answer Session open to the floor
12.20 – 12.30 pm Summary & Final Thoughts
*Note: While every effort has been made to ensure that the programme outlined above is accurate at the time of printing, the Organisers reserve the right to alter the programme depending on unforeseen circumstances.


Speaker Profiles


Dr. Sivapalan Vivekarajah, Chief Evangelist of Proficeo Consultants and Special Advisor to TeAM

Dr_Sivapalan_VivekarajahDr. Siva comes from a diverse background of 25 years of regional entrepreneurship in manufacturing, corporate consulting, corporate finance and venture capital consulting in Asia. He holds a Ph.D in Venture Capital studies from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland; an MBA (with Distinction) from University of Hull, UK; an LLB (Hons) from University of London and is also a qualified Chartered Secretary. He is also the Founder & Past President of the Technopreneurs Association of Malaysia (TeAM) and currently it’s Advisor.

Dr. Siva is known for his candid and unconventional views on entrepreneurship, business and the economy and is a popular speaker, panelist and writer. He has spoken at conventions and seminars across the world from Asia to the USA including such distinguished institutions as the University of San Francisco and University of Texas (USA), Universities of Edinburgh, Nottingham, London City University in the UK, Gent (Belgium) and at universities in Malaysia and Thailand on the topics of Entrepreneurship, Venture Capital, Strategy and Business. Dr. Siva also taught Strategic Management for 2 years at the University of Edinburgh Management School and was a guest lecturer on Entrepreneurship for the University of Nottingham MBA program and for undergraduates at University of Edinburgh.

He is actively involved in the training, education and coaching of Entrepreneurs for MSC Malaysia, Cradle Fund and SME Corporation and is an active member of several government working committees on funding and innovation. He is also a certified Facilitator for the Kauffman Foundation’s FastTrac® Program.


Michael Levin,Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, USA

Michael_LevinMichael Levin is an Entrepreneur-in-Residence with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. He is the chairman and principal shareholder of The Titan Industrial Corporation, a privately held group involved in steel distribution, value added manufacturing in the service center sector, and international steel trading. Levin is also the Founder and Chairman of NewView Technologies, formerly e-STEEL, originally one of the leading B2B e-commerce solutions for the global steel industry and now a supplier of internet based supply chain software for global corporations. In a special report by B-2-B Magazine in April 2002, Levin was named as one of the Top 25 Champions behind the e-commerce revolution. He is an authority on foreign policy and international trade issues.

Levin is a member of The Council on Foreign Relations where he has co-authored papers and served on several task forces such as 1993 with the Honorable Richard Holbrooke to review the U.S.’s NATO options in Bosnia, 1995 with the Honorable Jeanne Kirkpatrick to review USA objectives in the Middle East through negotiations with Y. Arafat, King Hussein, and S. Peres, 2000 Commission with the Honorable Paul Volker to review USA – Russian economic relations, and 2000 Commission with the Honorable Laura Tyson to analyze USA-Japan policy.

Levin holds an M.B.A. from Harvard University and a B.A. Honors from The University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Dato’ Hafsah Hashim,CEO SME Corporation, Malaysia

Dato_Hafsah_HashimDato’ Hafsah Hashim is currently the Chief Executive Officer of SME Corporation Malaysia (formerly known as the Small and Medium Industries Development Corporation (SMIDEC)). She holds a Bachelors Degree in Applied Science from Science University of Malaysia and Masters in Business Administration from Aston University, United Kingdom.

Dato’ Hafsah has vast experience in public sector administration and has served in several ministries including Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Primary Industries. She is also currently the council member of RosettaNet Malaysia and Malaysia Retail Council.

Her passion for the development of companies in Malaysia particularly the SMEs prompted her to be appointed as a Member of the Special Task Force to Facilitate Business (PEMUDAH) and the Deputy Chairman of Penang SME Development Council. Dato’ Hafsah was also appointed as the Chairman of ASEAN SME Agency Working Group for 2000 – 2001 and a resource speaker in various international fora on SMI/SME development.

Under Dato’ Hafsah’s leadership, SME Corp is currently undertaking collaboration and cooperation with other SME development agencies at bilateral level namely the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) of India, Office of SME Promotion of Thailand (OSMEP), Small and Medium Business Administration (SMBA) of Republic of Korea and Small and Medium Industry Development Organisation (KOSGEB) of Turkey.

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