PUTRAJAYA - Malaysia is heading towards a stronger financial position in 2017, thanks to the positive upward trend of oil and major commodity prices, said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak (pic).
The Prime Minister said palm oil is now selling higher at an average of RM3,264 (S$1,041) per tonne compared with RM2,650 per tonne last year.
"Likewise, the price of rubber is also encouraging and this would bring great relief to thousands of smallholders in the rural areas," he said when addressing Finance Ministry staff here on Thursday.
He said the price of rubber for the first three months of the year was expected to be around RM8 per kilo, double the price recorded during the same period in 2016.
Global oil prices were also on the rise at US$55 (S$77.80) per barrel as of Jan 23 compared with US$44 (S$62.20) per barrel last year, Najib said, adding that the commitment by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) and non-Opec nations to limit production would likely result in higher oil prices.
"If these encouraging trends continue, our financial standing will be stronger. This will allow the Government to carry out more programmes that will improve the wellbeing of the people," he added.
Najib, who is also Finance Minister, reminded civil servants to give more focus on improving their delivery of services to the people, in line with the Government's aim to make 2017 the "Year of Delivery."
"All must play their role in delivering programmes or projects that are beneficial to the people. Projects must be delivered according to schedule. If you encounter obstacles that will affect the delivery of your project, find solutions," he said.