At this time when our country needs to do reform and changes in many fields, we need to invest more and more in many priority sectors so that we would be able to reach our final goal of a developed, modern Democratic Federal Union soon. Therefore it is the duty of the Union Government to encourage investments not only from local companies and entrepreneurs but also from foreign companies and consortiums. As these investments come in, it is important for the Myanmar Investment Commission to make sure that these investments benefit not only the investors but the people of Myanmar also. For investors to consider Myanmar as a good place for investment, it is of course incumbent upon the Union Government to make sure that the essential ingredients for a “good investment climate” are in place such as electricity supply, transportation networks, banking facilities, skilled and hard-working labour force, to name just a few.
Here, among the different kinds of investments, I would like to give my opinion about the advisability of investing in some sectors which could result in great benefits and gains. There are two sectors worth mentioning, and they are Education and Health, because these two areas are concerned with all citizens, rich or poor.
First of all let me discuss about the Education sector.
If the citizens of a country get good Education, we can be sure that these educated citizens will take the responsibility for the all round development of the country’s future. If today’s youths are well-educated in different fields, they themselves will take care of the future of these different areas.
And if there are more educated citizens in our country they may not be persuaded to believe in senseless arguments and speech and inappropriate postings on social media such as Facebook which can lead to disputes and fights and all manner of unwanted results. When they are well-educated, they can have their own thinking and own educated opinions, and they can decide well and choose well in which path or way they should continue for the well-being of the whole country and its citizens.
For this, children need to get good Education from early age from which they will come to know what is right and what is wrong, what is good and what is bad, what to choose and what to shun . Then only they can make their own decisions correctly for themselves and for others too.
What should we do to give our children and youths a good Education?
First of all, we need to develop the Educational Philosophy of our country. As we are moving towards the emergence of a Federal Democratic Union, we need to lay down our Education Policies according to the Democratic Philosophy of Education. Even in the past, we had the Socialist Philosophy of Education, why should we not define and state in detail what a Democratic Philosophy of Education should be? Only after that, we need to lay down our Education policy according to this Philosophy. Then only we can plan what to do, when to do, and how to do to carrying out the different implementation plans of this Education policy. We can also choose which plan will come first and which will come last according to their importance.
As there is a saying, “The Fools do first what the Wiseman will do last.” The Vice-Versa is also correct. That is why, we need a plan, and a well thought out detailed time-table for implementation.
To upgrade the Education of a country, we need to do investment in this sector. Once during the time of Dr. Mahathir Mohamed in Malaysia, 75% of the GDP was used for the Education sector and after that, the development of Malaysia rose to new heights in a speedy manner.
Although are we getting more budget allocations for the education sector during these years than in the past, it is just still very small indeed. We should plan in which areas we should transform first, in the field of Preschools and Early Childhood or in the area of Basic Education, or in the field of Quality of Teachers and Teacher Training, or in the field of Assessment and Examinations, or in the field of Basic Education or Tertiary Education and so on. We need to study well first so that we will not make unnecessary mistakes though our intentions may be commendable.
If most of the citizens become educated, it is not so much difficult to educate them about the field of the Health and proper healthcare. But, as it is also an area concerned with individuals of all different ages, starting from the mother’s womb up to the tomb, we need more and more investments in this sector too. If all citizens have good health, they can work more for the country. Although a person may be well-educated, if his health is bad, how can he work well for the country?
That is why much more care and priority should be given to these two sectors — education and health.