Sunday, May 08, 2011

Volume 3 Issue 19: Two-Cent Economics

More Brain Drain?

For those of us who don't know, the CEO of Malaysia's Talent Corporation is this guy, Johan Mahmood Merican. He comes with a long list of laurels, among which, is graduating from the University of Cambridge. Before you become impressed, I just wanted to share this article, which I had to read more than once because I can't believe what he just said:

Merican added that there was “no point” trying to tackle the structural causes of Malaysia’s massive brain drain at this point in time as that would likely lead to inaction.

“If you start having that conversation then you’ll end up just doing nothing,” he said.

He stressed that it was more effective to focus on small steps that could be taken now to help achieve the long-term goals of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s economic reform agenda.

Can you believe this guy?  Here I thought that the whole point of the Talent Corp was to address the structural problems and bring back the talent. What was the point of the whole World Bank report on Brain Drain? Seriously, two out of ten Malaysian graduates have left the country in the past ten years. Does he sincerely believe any short term measures are going to bring any of the talent back without addressing structural weaknesses? Does he think that the smart people of Malaysia left the country without any thought and will be drawn back with a bunch of candy treats? I shudder to think what will happen if this Merican guy is kept in charge of this whole talent business. Good luck with that, Malaysia.

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