Monday, 25 January 2016

Ma'sia economy structurally sound but need to invest in people, say Eco World Liew

Star Media Group managing director and chief executive officer Datuk Seri Wong Chun Wai (right) presenting a souvenir to Liew. With them is specialist editor M. Shanmugam.

Eco World to build for first time homebuyers



Eco World chairman says banks and GLCs are in good shape

PETALING JAYA: Eco World Development Group Bhd’s chairman Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin is confident that Malaysia is structurally sound despite the unprecedented fall in oil prices.

Kicking off the first StarLIVE Business Series: Power Talks at Menara Star over the weekend, he said the country today was in a strong position to weather these circumstances.

“The banks are well capitalised while many of our government-linked companies (GLCs) are solid presently such as Khazanah Nasional Bhd. This is the good news, that the banks are not in trouble while none of the GLCs are in trouble. This is our fundamental strength and key to our economy,” Liew said.

“I am very confident that the Government will come up with a good budget next week because the Government is today listening to the people. While the ringgit is bad, the good news is that there is a solution to 1 Malaysia Development Bhd’s (1MDB) woes,” he said.

He said that the solution was being panned out on the markets now because 1MDB’s power assets and Bandar Malaysia had been sold.

“The economy will still grow by about 4%-5% this year despite the news and businesses need to take advantage of this,” he said.

He also rebutted comments by an American fund manager Peter Kohli who reportedly said that investors should stay clear of investing in Malaysia.

“I dispute him because there are a lot of people who still regard Malaysia as a jewel such as the mainland Chinese. Some are concerned that they are being involved but they are paying real money for our assets and bringing money into the country,” he said.

Speaking also on Eco World, which he founded, Liew said he decided to start out with his own property development company after he left SP Setia Bhd, which was also founded by him, pursuant to the takeover of SP Setia by Permodalan Nasional Bhd.

“It was very tempting and my wife told me, why not just relax and enjoy what we have attained. But I told myself that I will not fade away and thanks to my chief executive officers, we managed to recreate a brand once again,” he said.

He said having a solid team behind him in both family and work lives was key to him having being able come this far.

“I don’t play golf, I don’t go drinking often and my friends tell me that I am a boring person, so I decided to go back to work. If we worked together as a team, we will never go down,” he said.

He added that investing in people was the main ingredient behind creating successful brands.

“The people are the DNA of the company and over time, we have developed a DNA for ourselves as well. You need to invest in your people.

“In Eco World, we have the Eco World Learning Academy where all our staff members, irrespective of their education background, are trained,” Liew said.

“So far, in our company, we have been able to create and sustain people who are passionate and committed to their jobs,” he added.

On his family, he said instilling values in children were a priority from a young age.

“For my family, we told our kids that when it comes to food and book purchases, they can spend any amount of money they want to.

“But when it comes to branded items, they cannot buy those without my permission because they do not deserve it yet. We cannot afford to be spendthrift with such luxuries in life,” Liew said.

By Daniel Khoo The Star/Asia News Network

Related:

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EXCLUSIVE: SPOTLIGHT ON ECO WORLD'S LIEW TIAN XIONG



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