Malaysia’s Covid-19 infection rate is among the highest in the world

This Covid-19 outbreak in Malaysia has become one of the worst in the world.

People wear masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 14, 2020. Source: THX/VNA

According to data compiled by the online platform Our World in Data in the last 7 days, Malaysia recorded 483.72 Covid-19 infections per million people on July 28, ranking 8th globally and leader in Asia.

Meanwhile, the number of daily recorded deaths related to Covid-19 in Malaysia also reached about 4.90 cases per 1 million people on July 27. This is the 19th highest globally and the 3rd highest in Asia.

Malaysia has managed to keep the number of Covid-19 infections low for most of 2020, but is struggling with this rising wave of the disease, despite many restrictive measures against the virus. translate and apply a state of emergency.

According to CNBC, political analysts believe that the Malaysian government did not respond to Covid-19 properly when the epidemic worsened.

Joshua Kurlantzick, senior fellow for Southeast Asia at the Council on Foreign Relations, said: “Malaysian response is being hampered by chaotic governance and fighting. persistent political rock”.

Malaysia was plunged into political turmoil when former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad unexpectedly resigned last February, paving the way for Mr. Muhyiddin Yassin to form a government by assembling a fragile coalition.

Political opponents have long challenged Mr. Muhyiddin Yassin’s claim of support for a majority in the country’s 222-seat parliament. Calls for Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin to step down, including from his allies, grew after the Malaysian king on July 29 made a rare criticism of the government’s handling of the state of emergency. .

The king had previously agreed to Prime Minister Muhyiddin’s proposal to apply a state of emergency from January 1 to August 1 to prevent the Covid-19 epidemic from spreading in the country.

Many analysts see the move as an attempt by Prime Minister Muhyiddin, who is likely to maintain his political position, especially in the context of the suspension of Parliament due to the state of emergency and the inability to organize election office.

When Parliament reconvened this week, the Malaysian government surprised the country with its decision to end the state of emergency effective July 21. The Malaysian king said that the government’s unilateral end to the state of emergency was not in accordance with the constitutional provisions.

Since coming to power in March 2020, Prime Minister Muhyiddin has sought to evade parliamentary votes that political opponents could use to wage a vote of no confidence against the government. his leadership. Before that, the Malaysian Parliament had never voted of no confidence.

Despite political tensions, Malaysian authorities have accelerated the pace of Covid-19 vaccinations in recent weeks. More than 18% of the country’s 32 million people have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19, according to Our World in Data.

Economists from the Bank of England Barclays estimate that Malaysia – along with Singapore and South Korea – will be among Asian countries to reach the “necessary” level of Covid-19 vaccination this year.

The Malaysian government says it aims to vaccinate most of the adult population by the end of the year.

However, experts say that the worsening Covid-19 outbreak, coupled with social distancing measures, affects Malaysia’s growth prospects.

Last month, Barclays Bank downgraded Malaysia’s 2021 growth forecast from 5.5% to 5%, much lower than the 6-7.5% growth threshold previously forecast by the Bank of Malaysia.