PETALING JAYA: Former prime minister Najib Razak poured cold water today on Khazanah Nasional’s announcement of record profits, attributing it to the sovereign wealth fund’s sale of assets.
In a Facebook post, Najib said while Khazanah’s profits had risen, the value of its assets continued to drop.
In 2016, he said, under the Barisan Nasional administration, Khazanah’s assets were valued at RM102 billion. This increased to RM116 billion the following year.
But under the Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration, Najib added, the value of Khazanah’s assets fell to RM91 billion in 2018 and dropped further to RM73 billion in 2019.
Earlier today, Khazanah announced a record profit from operations totalling RM7.36 billion in 2019.
This came from higher divestment gains and lower impairments, as well as portfolio returns.
Najib said there were PH supporters who pointed to Khazanah’s performance as evidence that the government under the seventh prime minister was smart.
“You have to use logic,” he added. “The Malaysian stock market was the worst (performing market) in the world last year.
“How can Khazanah’s performance be good if it didn’t sell national assets in bulk?”
However, he said Khazanah had not spoken of a sale of assets, using instead the term “disposal”.