Bloomberg has hailed Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng as embodying the contrast between Penang’s business transparency and the four-decade old policies of the ruling party (Barisan Nasional) that favour Malays.
Lim Guan Eng turned Malaysia’s second-smallest state into the nation’s biggest economic success after he bumped into two National Instruments Corp. (NATI) executives at the local airport in 2008.
Elected in March that year as Penang’s first chief minister from an opposition party in 36 years, Lim was struggling with the prospect of federal funding cuts. He convinced the managers to set up a research and production center in the state, and within two years the former British trading post was Malaysia’s top destination for foreign manufacturing investment.
“The deal was struck very quickly,” said Eugene Cheong, a director at the local unit of the Austin, Texas-based maker of industrial testing and automation equipment.
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