MTUC upset by EPF's RM17b investment in US economic development

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) is puzzled with the almost RM17 billion investment by Employees Provident Fund (EPF) to the economic development of US.

"We are critical about the government's commitment to invest US$4 billion from EPF to strengthen US's economy. This commitment does not reflect the government in a positive light when Malaysia's employee funds are used to strengthen a superpower's economy. Especially given that we need to strengthen our country's own economy at least to realise the Vision 2020," it said in a statement yesterday.

Does US as superpower and one of the world's largest economy needs the retirement funds of Malaysians to strengthen its economy, the council asked.

"We are not against the government making international trade deals in this global economic climate, but before taking such measures, the government cannot neglect its own people. Especially employees' welfare and managing their funds," it added.

The congress added that EPF funds belonged to the people and should be used in increasing their welfare rather than invested in the US equity market to help their infrastructure.

They have written to the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak for better dividends for 2016 by reducing the dividends to EPF by 0.7%.

"This request was made in February as 2016 was the highest income gained by EPF since its establishment," it said.

Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak's meeting with US President Donald Trump on Tuesday has come under criticism after the prime minister's pledged of billions of ringgit in investments there.