Miscellaneous Knowledge Notes

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  • Publication
    Firms’ Recovery from COVID-19 in Malaysia: Results from the 4th Round of COVID-19 Business Pulse Survey
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2022-02-28) Kuriakose, Smita; Tran, Trang Thu; Ting, Kok Onn; Hebous, Sarah Waltraut
    The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) business pulse survey (BPS) is a rapid survey designed to measure the various channels of impact of COVID-19 on firms, firm adjustment strategies, and public policy responses. The World Bank, in collaboration with a private survey company, conducted the 4th round of the Malaysia BPS in February to March 2022, following the 1st round in October 2020, 2nd round in Mid-January to February 2021, and 3rd round in July 2021. Firms were sampled randomly from an online business panel database, which consists of 100,000+ companies in all sectors and sizes, across Peninsular and East Malaysia. A minimum sample size was obtained for sectors that are important to Malaysia’s economy and are sensitive to the COVID-19 crisis (export-oriented activities: electronics, automotive, tourism related activities) while preserving the sectoral shares in the sampling frame. The survey was conducted online and yielded 1,500 responses from respondents in senior management positions at their company (i.e. owners, C-suite or Director level).
  • Publication
    Why Central Bank Independence Matters
    (World Bank, Malaysia, 2021-11-30) Bandaogo, Mahama Samir
    Deep economic crises - the global financial crisis and the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic - have put some strains on and rekindled an older debate about the costs and benefits of central bank Independence. Central banks have been accorded more independence since the 1970s, which has helped bring down and keep inflation low and reduced the risk of fiscal crises. However, as their interventions in the economy with unconventional policies expand further beyond their original mandate, especially those pertaining to financial stability, critics have called for more oversight of their activities. That is because some of the central banks’ newfound responsibilities such as financial stability does not have a precise and unambiguous target or measure, making accountability difficult. The evidence in support of central bank independence remains strong, as highlighted in this brief. However, in light of the expansion of central banks’ power, reforms should aim to institute oversight of the newfound powers.
  • Publication
    Policy Actions to Increase the Supply of COVID-19 Vaccines in the Short Term
    (World Bank, Malaysia, 2021-08-16) Murthi, Mamta; Reed, Tristan
    Vaccination rates in developing countries lag those in developed countries by a huge margin. This Research & Policy Brief identifies and quantifies the impact of six policy and regulatory actions that could increase vaccine supply to developing countries before the end of 2021. The actions focus on measures to accelerate regulatory approvals, optimize production capacity across firms, reconfigure prioritization of low-risk groups, and adjust generous dosage thresholds. Together these actions could yield enough supply to reach the interim target to vaccinate at least 40 percent of the population of every country by the end of 2021, as a means to vaccinate 60 percent of global population by mid-2022, thereby helping to end the pandemic earlier, reducing uncertainty and raising growth.
  • Publication
    Does Elderly Employment Reduce Job Opportunities for Youth?
    (World Bank, Malaysia, 2021-08-09) Jasmin, Alyssa Farha; Abdur Rahman, Amanina
    The aging of populations around the world and the associated fall in the working age population are expected to adversely affect countries’ GDP growth in coming decades. These demographic shifts will also place fiscal pressure on governments, given the need either to finance pension systems or to support the most vulnerable in retirement. Extending working lives is imperative but often politically challenging, due to the widespread belief that extending employment for older workers will limit employment opportunities for youth. Global empirical evidence summarized in this brief, as well as original analysis, does not support this belief, and in fact suggests that elderly employment has positive effects on youth employment, on the well-being of older workers, and on economies and societies. There is much to gain in creating a supportive regulatory environment to harness the economic potential of older workers by eliminating age-biased hiring practices, allowing for flexible working conditions, and providing equal opportunities for upskilling and reskilling.
  • Publication
    Impacts of COVID-19 on Firms in Malaysia: Results from the 3rd Round of COVID-19 Business Pulse Survey
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-07) Kuriakose, Smita; Tran, Trang; Ting, Kok Onn; Hebous, Sarah
    The COVID-19 Business Pulse Survey (BPS) is a rapid survey designed to measure the various channels of impact of COVID-19 on firms, firm adjustment strategies, and public policy responses. The World Bank, in collaboration with a private survey company, conducted the 3rd round of survey in July 2021, following the 1st round in October 2020 and 2nd round of the Malaysia BPS in Mid-January to February 2021. Firms were sampled randomly from an online business panel database, which consists of 100,000+ companies in all sectors and sizes, across Peninsular and East Malaysia. A minimum sample size was obtained for sectors that are important to Malaysia’s economy and are sensitive to the COVID-19 crisis (export-oriented activities: electronics, automotive, tourism related activities) while preserving the sectoral shares in the sampling frame. The survey was conducted online and yielded 1,500 responses from respondents in senior management positions at their company (i.e. owners, C-suite or Director level).
  • Publication
    Impacts of COVID-19 on Firms in Malaysia: Results from the 2nd Round of COVID-19 Business Pulse Survey
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-06-24) Kuriakose, Smita; Tran, Trang; Ting, Kok Onn; Hebeous, Sarah
    The re-imposition of the Conditional Movement Control Order during mid-October 2020 and the upgrade to a stricter lockdown to Movement Control Order in January 2021 has substantially weakened the recovery momentum highlighted in Round 1 of Business Pulse Survey (early October 2020). To adapt to the latest lockdown, the majority of firms responded by remaining partially open in operations. Employment adjustments such as reducing work hours remain the most common method by firms. Supply chain disruptions remain a major problem in the market. Adoption of digital technologies remains the most popular choice for adjustment by firms, with sales and marketing functions topping the list of digital adoption.
  • Publication
    The Spread of COVID-19 and Policy Responses
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-01-07) Islamaj, Ergys; Kim, Young Eun; Le, Duong Trung
    Since early 2020, the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has spread to most countries and territories around the world. For many countries, the second wave of infections is turning out to be more serious than the first. Notwithstanding the global spread of the virus, public policy responses have varied across countries and regions. This brief analyzes the spread of COVID-19 and the effectiveness of policy efforts to contain the disease across a large number of countries. The findings suggest that public health measures - especially testing - and economic support policies are associated with effective containment of the disease, and thus are supporting fundamental prerequisites for a resumption of normalcy. This brief examines the evolution of COVID-19 and public policy responses across country groups around the world; presents an econometric analysis of the relationship between the spread of infections and the policy responses; and concludes with main policy implications.
  • Publication
    Impacts of COVID-19 on Firms in Malaysia: Results from the 1st Round of COVID-19 Business Pulse Survey
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-12) Kuriakose, Smita; Tran, Trang
    The COVID-19 Business Pulse Survey (BPS) is a rapid survey designed to measure the various channels of impact of COVID-19 on firms, firm adjustment strategies, and public policy responses. The World Bank, in collaboration with a private survey company, conducted the 1st round of the Malaysia BPS in October 2020. Firms were sampled randomly from an online business panel database, which consists of 100,000 plus companies in all sectors and sizes, across Peninsular and East Malaysia. A minimum sample size was obtained for sectors that are important to Malaysia’s economy and are sensitive to the COVID-19 crisis (export oriented activities: electronics, automotive, tourism related activities) while preserving the sectoral shares in the sampling frame. The survey was conducted online and yielded 1,500 responses from respondents in senior management positions at their company (i.e. owners, C-suite or Director level).
  • Publication
    Exploring the Potential of Gender Parity to Promote Economic Growth
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-10-27) Devadas, Sharmila; Kim, Young Eun
    Narrowing the gender gap is critical to sustainable and inclusive growth. This brief discusses how moving toward gender equality can improve female labor force participation, human capital, and total factor productivity, leading to higher economic growth. The analysis simulates the cross-country impact of increasing female labor force participation and education on GDP growth for the next three decades. In practice, achieving substantial gains in gender equality across generations will require sustained efforts to reset gender norms, starting with the young, and to increase women's economic participation and voice in society in areas of influence.
  • Publication
    Insights for Global Development Solutions
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2017-10) World Bank Group
    The Development Digest is a half-yearly publication that features key works from teams based at the World Bank Group Global Knowledge and Research Hub in Malaysia. This third issue of the Development Digest focuses on green Islamic financing, where Malaysia leads the way with the issuance of the world's first green corporate sukuk. This digest also looks into topics like ASEAN at 50, open data, the role of GDP in development, migration, and microfinance. Other articles include one on industrial policies versus public goods to spur growth, and another on economic forecasting.