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Malaysian gov't looks into debt issuance, asset monetization for financing need
Last Updated: 2018-09-19 15:59 | Xinhua
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The Malaysian government is looking into options available to meet short-term financing needs that do not adversely impact growth, including debt issuance and asset monetization, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said Wednesday.

In identifying the optimal mix of financing options, the government will be guided by three principles which include the lowest financing cost, while the timing and size of fund raising will be guided by the ability of the financial markets to absorb it in an orderly manner and avoid unintended consequences, Lim said in a statement.

He also noted that any form of strategy adopted will be focused on maintaining the overall confidence in fiscal sustainability and economic resiliency.

On debt issuance, he said, the benefits of sovereign debt issuance are plenty and it is the simplest, most reliable, and easiest to manage due to the size of Malaysian institutional investors.

The government is also looking into monetizing some of its non-critical and non-strategic assets by engaging in the sale of shares, land, and leasing of idle government assets and buildings.

Lim earlier indicated the total debt for the country has reached 1.087 trillion ringgit, or 80.3 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP). But he was also hopeful that the country will meet its deficit target of 2.8 percent of GDP this year.

"Balancing short-term fiscal gains and long-term revenue streams and growth is imperative to this government. A mixed policy strategy has many stakeholders and we will ensure that they are all engaged and considered to ensure a thorough and balanced fiscal strategy that minimises negative impacts," he said.

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