Malaysia, pen drives and brain drain

In the fifties when I was born and in the sixties when i was a teenager studying in high school, Taiwan was a poor, underdeveloped country ruled by generals who lost the war in Mainland China and fled to this island in the late 40s.

In 1980, as a youn man, I went to Taiwan for a tour with my wife. It was then considered a developing country, with not much of industry and natural resources, but with many universities that churned out world class students.

Because it has very little natural resources, and much of its money were tied down in maintaining a huge army (relative to its size and population), the people were still very poor. An average Taiwanese family was poorer than their counterparts in Malaysia and percapita income was way behind Malaysia despite the fact that it had almost the same population in a country much smaller than us.

Many Malaysians, especially those educated in the CHinese Medium , went to Taiwan to study even in those days. I was impressed by the highly educated work force, and the worldly knowledge of the people. I mentioned to my wife then that it would be a matter of time they would overtake us, since they had very good universities and a very hardworking work force. Everyone there seemed to study so hard in order to be able to get scholarships to go over to the States.

Yesterday, I read an article that Acer is set to overtake Dell to be the second biggest producers of personal computers. For those who have not heard of Acer ( not many I suspect),  Acer is a Taiwanese company which has grown to be a big  multinationals.

Taiwan is also listed to be one of the richest countries now, while we are ranked around 60.

I can’t help but ponder ” what went wrong”?

While Taiwan has overtaken us and is now so far ahead, we are still at the stage of trying to lure investments from the likes of Acers from all over the world, including Taiwan.

Do you know who is the inventer of thumb pendrive? His name is Pua Kien Seng, and he is a Malaysian.

Wow! Malaysian, you will feel proud as a fellow Malaysian , just like me!

Pendrive is a small device which has become so big in usage. It is now an indispensable part of those who use computers. And it is invented by a Malaysian. Wow, we should be making tons and tons of money from this one invention from one of our own.

But wait a minute! Before you go out and celebrate this piece of news, which I read in my fellow blogger Justin’s blog, let me shock you with the following facts.

He is a Malaysian, but he invented the device in Taiwan and he is now based in Taiwan. So thumb pendrive is considered to be a Taiwanese invention. Or more correctly, it is an invention by the Republic of China, not Malaysia, even though the inventor is a Malaysian.

Another case of brain drain. You may want to read one of my top posts on this topic here (racial politics and Brain Drain).

JUst imagine how much our country could have earned if thumb pendrive is invented in Malaysia ? We could have sold millions of it and earns billions. NOt to mention the up and downstream industries that could have been spurned from this one invention.

This is just tip of the iceburgs. There are many other talented inventions by Malaysians in other countries, I am very sure. .

As usual , we miss the chance . Why are talented Malaysians not coming back?

I have written so many times on this , I am now feeling very tired to talk about the same thing. Tired yes, Sad yes, sick yes. Sick to the core. So sick that I would not want to go into the reasons of brain drain anymore.

Maybe you just go and read the article mentioned above and the 100 over comments in that post, some made by exMalaysians overseas, who are now professors, professionals , successful businessmen, etc etc..



97 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. klm
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 19:20:53

    Dr. Hsu Very nice article.

    My comment. If the thumb drive technology is invented in Malaysia, it may not see daylight. There is no technology infrastructure to manufacture the product. No one in Malaysia would dare back this venture. The start up cost of any semi con products run into many tens of millions of USD.

    Anyway, it still have to go to Taiwan to be made. The technology would end up being licensed to Taiwan.


  2. robertchai
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 20:20:10

    Brain drain happened when the policies here is not right. Imagine Singapore will offer various scholarship to lure our bright students over there. One of my friend son was offered a scholarship to study in Singapore right after SPM. Even before the SPM result was announced, he was offered a place in Raffles College. What a brain drain?

    Even our STPM students were lure to study in NUS and technical schools. Is it time that we needed more luck and opportunities in Malaysia? Malaysians need to work harder coping with the inflation rate and our productivity need to push to high rate. But Malaysia is still a land of opportunities if one ready to work hard, innovative and creative.


  3. Amin
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 21:26:58


    Natural resources and other endowed wealth would be squandered away if the ones having the custody, distribution and usage of them, are not proficient and worst still corrupt.

    In Singapore, unless one is a graduate having passed with at least a second upper honours, from a premier university, it is difficult to join the Government service as a senior officer. The rationale is that those who are operators of fiscal policies, must be capable enough to satisfy and attain the optimum standard.

    What a contrast here in Malaysia. Suffice to say that most of the senior government officials are sub-standard in all aspects and imagine the untold damages that have been inflicted upon our socio-economy well-being of the country over all these years. In cohorts are the politicians of the day.

    What type of progress can we expect then?

    The bright, smart and intelligent graduates of the non-Malays, even if they were selected and absorbed in the public service (rarely so) would be by-passed in promotion exercises. Hence, they choose to opt out early and for the rest just flock to foreign lands to find their pots of gold.

    I state here with a sense conviction because I was one of those affected.


  4. Amin
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 21:31:40


    – socio-economic
    – as for the rest


  5. Disgusted
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 21:35:19

    What about the famous guy who sells shoes and many more clothing designers in fashion, Malaysians who had settled abroad.


  6. Fi-sha
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 21:37:32

    Dear Dr Hsu

    While it’s great to know that our fellow malaysian invented the ever-important thumb drive, I wonder where have we gone wrong that resulted in such a huge brain drain.

    My dear friend once invented an electronic item, manufactured in malaysia but only marketed in australia.

    A friend continues working in UK for he thinks his little children would have a better education there.

    Most work overseas because your hardworks, your creativity, your abilities are all clearly translated into something rewarding that make them feel good.

    They say the most difficult fight in this world is when you have to fight your own ‘family’. As much as you wanted to make things right, it just hurt too badly and the best thing to do is walk away…

    I wish the day will come when our fellow great malaysians will come back because they wanted to share and make this nation better. First, we need to change the system and the perception.

    Thanks for sharing Dr Hsu.


  7. Chabalang
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 21:41:36

    Dear Dr., I can empathise with your frustration…as I can feel it too…

    I am sure thousands of M’sians feel the same way as you over the issue – the best way is to make the BN Govt change or be changed.

    BTW, “thumbdrive” is invented by a S’pore company called Trek 2000 who holds the patent for “thumbdrive”. Mr Pua’s “invention” is Pendrive. There was confusion over the patents.


  8. Justin Choo
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 21:57:06

    Dr Hsu,
    We all know the cause. No point repeating.

    Hope my email to you doesn’t go to spam.

    Would appreciate if you replied.

    Thanks a million


  9. klm
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 22:29:34

    Fi-sha. Dr. M tried and many came back. After 2-3 years, all left again dis-disillusioned. The sub-standards (to use Amin’s word) senior civil servants were jealous and did funny things.

    I am afraid that once bitten twice shy. No one will come back anymore.

    Some of my ex-malaysian friends do not want anything to do with any govt linked ventures. They are very shy of them.


  10. A true Malaysian
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 23:54:32

    I am equally sick of Malaysia, Dr. Hsu. Just look around ourselves, how many of our bright cousins, nieces, nephews, daughters, sons no more with us in Malaysia?

    Yet, for present govt, all these are “NO BIG DEAL”. No way these BeEnders will change.

    What are you waiting for?


  11. Observant
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 00:47:20

    It is indeed very heart wrenching that we could not convince our home born talents to stay and contribute towards a progressive and prosperous Malaysia. Our huge losses will be big gains to other countries who welcomed them them with open arms and sincere appreciations.

    As in the pasts, we have heard our past PM(s) saying about … “First class infrastructure but third class mentality”. It is most ironic that we export our best brains and import a lot of unskillful workers, thus crippling ourselves and preventing ourselves from achieving the much deserved developed nation status.

    Are we comfortable with what we are having now or are we going to reverse this senseless drainage of prized human assets?


  12. Bruce Ng
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 03:05:05

    Any invention in Malaysia would:
    1) die at birth because nobody would fund its development and manufacture
    2) some politician would have hijacked it and then screw it
    3) like a previous commentor said, Malaysia does not have the infrastructure to manufacture it, so it will die away
    4) ..nah, it would be just a pipe dream..because the brainy would-be inventor would not have been admitted to a local university, and would be studying in USA, Australia, UK, Taiwan, or whavtever, and would have invented the stuff in his or her new adopted country


  13. Bruce Ng
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 03:19:42

    The government does not care about the brain drain. The only that matters is the quota is maintained for university entrance.


  14. Ah Beng
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 03:22:25

    Observant, Malaysia not only import unskilled workers, it also gives out citizenships by the tons to the unskilled Indonesians to improve BN’s chances of winning the elections.


  15. Shakarul
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 03:32:49

    Do you know who initiated the concept of encrypted graphic code for the proper running of secured website? He is a Malaysian by the name of Daniel Sie who is now residing in Seattle, USA. So remember each time when you send an online password to a recipient, the routine is brought into existence through a brilliant piece of work by a fellow Malaysian.


  16. M L Khor
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 04:43:38

    Dr. Hsu,

    Most of us, if not all, know the causes for the talents (especially young Malaysians) and professionals BRAIN DRAINS in Malaysia. As long as the current system of government and public policies pertaining to education, job/economics opportunities, rewards and etc. are maintained, I am sad to say that brain drains will not stop. Eventually, Malaysia’s global competitiveness will be severely weakened.
    Since immigrating to the US, my children have enjoyed a lot of opportunities to nurture their interest regardless of race, which in Malaysia is accorded only to the Elite. Accesses to educational opportunities, in general, are based on merit and there is no fear that any race will benefit more because eventually the nation will benefit. Perception of fairness of educational opportunities by our young Malaysians and creating fertile environments to nurture talents to further young Malaysian academic pursuits will inculcate strong feelings of patriotism for the country. The implicit benefits will be enormous.
    Probably, new opportunity will be available to young Malaysian students soon. On June 28, I happen to meet two UKM educators who are in John Hopkins University, Baltimore (I sent my son to attend a summer program). They are there as understudies to learn and duplicate the John Hopkins renowned “Talented Youth” program. Accordingly, the program will be implemented in UKM in November/December 2009. Hopefully, this program will contribute towards the 1Malaysia concept.


  17. clearwater
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 05:37:50

    Let us not beat up ourselves over the perceived loss to Malaysia of Pua and his pendrive invention. Let us be happy for him and all other Malaysians, wherever they are, who persevered despite unfair obstacles, and found alternative channels to realize their potential and use their talent for their own betterment, if not ours.

    The world is still an oyster for a young man with drive and ambition, even if Malaysia may not be.
    It is too easy to become cynical and lose sight of the positive side of this story, all because we despair of this country’s discriminatory policies and uncaring environment and the damage it does us all in the long run. This is a story to inspire our children; that if there’s a will, there’s a way and a small country’s boundary cannot contain their large ambitions.


  18. Dr T.KHAW
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 06:09:50

    Good article Dr.Hsu
    I am one who left Malaysian since 1970 and now living in London. I did my PhD in Scotland.
    During my time one had to sit for the entrance exam (marked locally) to sixth form while waiting for HSC (Higher School Certificate – the medium of instruction was still English at that time) results from UK. All Malays passed the entrance exam (you know why) but they were thrown out when the HSC results came in.
    From this exoerience I knew that some ‘cooking’ and cheating were going in the Ministry of Education. Hence it was time to leave for better future somewhere.
    I first went to Singapore to work and then to Scotland to study.

    I could not see Malaysia as a developed nation during my life time. The GNI is about US$7000 per head and this comparable to some African countries. Singapore GNI is US$32000,so it is nearly 5 time higher than Malaysia.

    My advice to young students to leave for Singapore where you would get better prospect and brighter future for your family.

    Dr. T Khaw


  19. seenitall
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 07:18:46

    In 1958 while in high school a notice that came from the education office was read to the class. It said all malay students had to have 20% extra marks added to their exam results. These days this is all done in secret,it appears they use a formula like “square root times ten” to arrive at final mark. This might account for the number of “brilliant” students with up to 20As. Somehow some of these fail overseas.


  20. my twocents worth
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 09:03:40

    My son runs an IT business in Australia, but would dearly love to return home. He has tried many times to work from home when he comes back, but our internet speeds for a start make it impossible for him to operate at the level he is used to. (Not just the maximum speed, but the dropping out of signals and the variation in speed. Downloading a 100MB file which takes him 90 secs in Australia takes half an hour here! ) He has worked with many Malaysian developers and wishes to continue this by setting up a branch here. The red tape and unrealistic requirements made this an impossibility and he has, for now, given up on the idea.
    However, he still has hope. He returned to vote next year, and his vote counted.


  21. Sham
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 09:19:31

    This is a global world. People go anywhere to seek their fortunes and have been doing so all along. That is how it should be. After all, the Han chinese have been seeking their fortunes in Taiwan for thousands of years (largely displacing the indigenous people!). It is no surprise that Pua Kien Seng did the same as did the ancient Han. If one were to follow Dr Hsu’s logic, there should be no Han Chinese in Taiwan or even in Malaysia today: they should have stayed put in China.


  22. Eric
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 09:27:03

    Funny, UMNO apologists DN, JMD and followers do not seem to come and argue these facts.

    1 Black Malaysia. Democracy First. Elections Now.


  23. Ketuanan Cina
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 09:34:37

    Let’s face facts….

    As long as it is not the chinese or indian whom succeed in malaysia, they would not care if the patent is given to another country.

    They would rather call an indonesian, indian mamak, whom are not born in Malaysia a BUMIPUTRA than to accord the status to CHINESE and INDIANS whom are born in Malaysia…..

    They would rather go broke as a country than to see the non’s succeed in malaysia.

    Ketuanan Cina


  24. mei
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 09:36:31

    As long as those ‘crutches’ are still in place, we will continue to experience this sub-standard culture across the board – education, civil service, transportation etc., by way of corruption, cronyism, bias, red-tape and the list goes on.

    In the pendrive case or any such invention for that matter, I would agree with Bruce Ng. A (group of) politician(s) with vested interests would set demands for a cut in everything in the development, manufacturing and distribution process, and make a viable venture a liability.


  25. klm
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:00:55

    If you want empirical evidence, read today MI”

    “World Bank says Malaysia’s governance worsened in last five years”

    or go to


  26. DontPlayGod
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:01:55

    Some of us here don’t get it. UMNO doesn’t consider non-Malays who have left our shores as brain drain, no matter how successful and resourceful these non-Malays are. In fact, the more non-Malays leaving our shores, the happier will our racist UMNO politicians be.

    They only consider Malays who have left our shores as brain drain.


  27. mak jun yeen
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:10:57

    It doesnt matter if it is a malaysian who invented the pendrive or Malaysia could have been the country attributed to the invention.

    The fact is Taiwan is very different from Malaysia.

    They had a dictatorial governent ran by a minority over a native majority and the creme of the Chinese mainland intelectuals went over to set up their Universities. Anyway the people was homogenous.

    In Malaysia had we adopted such policies as in Taiwan, we would have created a wide disparity amongst the races.

    Lets face the truth head on, our Universities and their research would have been dominated by one particular ethnic comunity, and all acess to IT technology and its profits would have been reaped by one particular community and you would most probably be the main beneficiary.

    The other community would most probably be seething in anger and Dr Pua would have left anyway for as there would not have security and stabillity in the country.

    To put it bluntly, Taiwan had to sail in a sea where the storms were out of her control. She had to built a strong and able sailors.

    Malaysia was sailing in a tranquil sea facing potential mutiny amonst her sailors. She had to keep them from bringing done the boat.

    We just cant compare.


  28. Fisher
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:41:34

    Dear Dr Hsu,
    I have always been fascinated with the amount of Malaysian talent lost as a result of the policies that had encouraged this trend, and continues to encourage this trend.
    I have 3 brothers overseas – a Phd in chemistry, an inventor with a patent, and a software engineer. There are hundreds of thousands of families in Malaysia with hundreds of thousands of children, whose talents and expertise have been lost irrevocably from this country.
    Perhaps with a survey, critical info of all those who had migrated (whatever the race!) will help show immensity of this loss.
    Therefore, for those who would like to participate, especially immediate family and friends, please write in to with the following info on the persons migrated –
    1. Field of expertise (eg – Chemical, nuclear, Biomed, Graphics, Nursing, Economics,Accountancy, etc.)
    2. Tertiary Level (Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate, Post D)
    3. Number of Years working overseas/migrated.
    4. Outstanding work – inventions, patents, awards, etc.
    5. Name and age (Family name and initials only. This is to prevent duplication that may skew the data input.)
    6. Hometown (as we want to see the rural factor in such migrations).
    Hopefully, we will be able to come up with some facts and figures on the immensity of the loss to our nation.
    It is so sad that there are those who would rather see the loss that cripples the progress of the nation than be threatened by any development that impacts their vested interests. And in the meantime, millions of Malaysians of all races are impoverished!
    It is hoped that you will permit the posting of this comment to encourage the feedback at the email address above. Would love to have your assistance in looking at the feedback to draw sensible conclusions. Thank you Dr Hsu.


  29. ZZC
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:42:05

    Chabalang wrote above: “BTW, “thumbdrive” is invented by a S’pore company called Trek 2000 who holds the patent for “thumbdrive”. Mr Pua’s “invention” is Pendrive. There was confusion over the patents.”

    In actual fact, Thumb Drive and Pen Drive are both brand names for the same type of device from different companies. The correct general technical term for such a device is USB Flash Drive. The Singapore listed company Trek2000 already started selling its Thumb Drive in year 2000 and it holds the patent in many countries, as mentioned by Chabalang above. Mr Pua only launched his product a year later than Trek (the old name of Trek2000), so I am wondering whether he can really be described as the inventor.

    A Shenzen company Netac was also granted a similar patent in 2002 by China but the validity has been contested.


  30. LAWA
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:42:36

    I am pure breed Malay. Served the government for 25 years. My family and I have had enough of the NEP. Only cronies of UMNO and some lap dogs from MCA & MIC benefit. We are all now overseas, and I am telling all my Malay friends to pack up and go. Global world….


  31. Fisher
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:43:00

    Sorry, email should be Sincere apologies.


  32. Goldee
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:55:35

    Dear Dr. Hsu,

    In the Malayan, days we were not only ahead of Taiwan but also countries like Korea, Thailand and Indonesia in terms of economy. China was way behind us then.

    We have all the natural resources, like rubber, tin, coconut etc. Our currency was then stronger than most countries including Singapore. We are trailling behind all these countries now and even Thai Baht is stronger then our Ringgit.

    Why? One simple reason was, we (even till today) are busy fighting among ourselves who should take control the economy of the country. Instead of cooperating to compete with countries as mentioned who are the real “enemies”, we are busy with internal fighting. When the others have progressed Malaysia was left far way behind.

    Do UMNO/BN government really care about brain drain. Try giving a constructive criticism, those walking in the Power of Corridor will tell you to leave the country if you are not happy the way they administer the country.

    It won’t be surprised in not too far a distance, even Vietnam and Cambodia will over take Malaysia.


  33. oceanuz
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:00:58

    Nothing to be sad of.
    I doubt he will be such successful if he chose to start his venture in Malaysia.
    And btw, there’s no point to be proud of others’ success. This extends to things like a “Chinese” won something, an Asian did something, a humankind made something…
    What’s there to be proud of?

    Besides, I’ll be checking back in no time to see how Malaysia politicians turn this into a racial issue.


  34. ck
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:06:10

    I graduated from public University in year 2007. For those who have experiences study in public Uni for pass ten years, they will probably haveing the same opinion with me -the stardard of our country higher education is in a worrying state. Many of my unimate was graduated with CGPA less than 2.5 and they cant even speak simple English eventhough they was endorsed with additional english classes along thier 3 years study by the University. Most of them spend more than a year to find a decent job, and guess what, they are now the Pegawai in the government department! Some of them continue their master degree (the minimum Qualification to study Master degree is CGPA 2.7) and now become a lecturer in the Uni !…

    On the other hand, the top student with excellent result, 90% of them is currently working in Singapore or pursue thier master degree in oversea and won’t be coming back to work in malaysia.

    I still remember that when my STPM result being anounced, many the top students were happily applying to their dream couses in UM, USM or UTM. The result is, most of them failed to get what the course they wanted or being offer to a course they never apply (so-called the 9th choice). at the end, all of these disappointed top students have then leaved the country to further thier study in NUS or NTU Singapore with FULL Scholarships! and now they all become the profesional in SG with a salary 4 times higher than thier former classmate in malaysia and already get thier PR.

    the average student like me however still working in Malaysia. But yet after few years working, i’m thinking of migrating to other country for the sake of myself and my kids (thinking that afterall, chinese will always be consider as 2nd class race in the national policies).

    We are hoping the country to change, but the question is when? another 10 years, or 20 years? or 50 years? The problem with malaysia today is the unfair/ uncompatitive policies and the low standard of the government servant/work forces. This is the “bad fruits” resulted from the decision makers 20-30 years ago. It’s hard to be changed.

    Last word, if you ask me what is the opinion/view to Malaysia in future 10 to 20 years, i will say: Is dull and hard.

    p/s: Malaysia is such a blessed country with all the valueable natural resources and people. the sad thing is all of these being wasted and used by other countries. Is really sad….


  35. BabaNyonya
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:10:05

    Dr Hsu,
    This hasn’t been commented on. The article you linked to says that the CEO of Acer is named Gianfranco Lanci originally from Turin, Italy.

    Stan Shih (founder of Acer) realizes that to compete on the world stage, you have to hire the best, irrespective of race or nationality. As a a result, Acer is growing and about to overtake Dell.

    The Chairman of Sony is the Welshman Howard Stringer. Nissan is run by a Brazilian. These are renowned corporations but they are not afraid to put a non-Japanese in charge. And no one in Japan regards them as a threat.

    Proton, MAS, Sime Darby etc. should take heed.

    But I doubt we’ll see a non-Malay face in the higher management of these companies anytime soon.


  36. Dr Hsu
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:16:59

    Yes, meritocracy is the only way to achieve excellence. Competition makes people sharp ad on their toes.

    Get the best people to do the job. if the job is done well, all the people will benefit regardless of their skin colour, their faith.

    In the past, many Malaysians did come back and work . I remember a famous heart surgeon came back ad work, but he left after some time.

    Those who came back, no matter how bright they were, they can never hope to get to the top position. The top position is invariable reserved. Often these bright people have to work under restraint and under some one who is not only incompetent but who is trying to put obstacles in the paths of these returning talents. In the end most of them left again.


  37. A true Malaysian
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:17:42

    Dr. Hsu,

    Your articles always attract readers and invoked them to comment as well. But, articles related to ‘brain drain’ are the one which attracted the most hits simply because they strike the right chords in our hearts.

    May I suggest to you, for the benefit of all, put a link on label “brain drain” on the right column of this Forum.

    Perhaps whenever you argue with your party leaders on this topic, you can request them to read your blog and comments first so to bring them back to their senses, as they are so long out of touch….:D


  38. annoyed
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:25:30

    May I invite all of you to take a vote here,

    “….get the views of the respective state religious councils first before arriving at a decision on the matter of conversion of minors to Islam.”

    If I interpret it correctly, “religious councils” here means “Islamic councils”. Why not it means to include religious bodies of other religions?

    Please vote + for me if I infact, interpret it correctly.

    After so many years of merdeka, Malaysia still like that, shame!!!


  39. ahoo
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:28:23

    Dr Hsu,

    Despair not as those policies that was against us, Malaysians of non-bumi status have in fact proven that somehow many Malaysians are with real talent. Maybe without such policies, we would not have strived and have such perseverance.

    Hardships may be painful but it certainly strengthen the mind and create innovativeness. I prefer to look at the other side of the coin that we are born here for a purpose. This nation’s don’t owe us a living nor are we to blame it for every misfortune that we encounter.

    We need to use whatever talent and resources that we have to build ourselves a better family as compared to our forefathers. The fact that you are labouring in writing so many wonderful articles to date itself is teaching us to be self reliant. If we are to wait for changes to take place in the govt, it be never happen until and unless we play our part in contributing to the much needed change.

    Many people have not even register themselves and as such can’t even vote, so how to effect change if we talk only but are not interested to play a small significant role in voting. We must take personal responsibility in this area. We cannot change the current circumstances (bad policies, biased and selective students intake etc) but we can prepare ourself to vote wisely where it matters and to see changes in our generation. This is the legacy we can leave for our future generation. We are here not of our own choice but we can make the best of the situation no matter what comes as we have just this one life on earth.


  40. Ray-of-Hope
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:30:37

    klm: “Fi-sha. Dr. M tried and many came back. After 2-3 years, all left again dis-disillusioned.”

    Of coz they r disillusioned, they shud have known, Dr.M was the no.1 racist ultra of this sad nation even b4 he became PM, his extremist views were known to all Malayans in the 60s, he had partly if not mainly caused 513 riot to happen, til today he still is a racist, it was during his PM’ship that Msia was ruined with his 22-yrs of racist rules, he single-handedly destroyed the major pillars of our beloved nation, n he made our fellow Malays crippled by making them walk with crutches given to them free to them with endless subsidies from our hard-earned ringgits, abused most of our limited oil revenues to build mega-$$$ landmark projects, to satisfy his megalomaniac ego.

    He made our beloved nation drain of tens of billions of RM since the 1st yr of his PM’ship, thru’ massive losses in his stupid ventures in Maminco (London Tin Market manipulation), collapsed KL Palm-oil Commodity Futures market in the 80s which caused KFC’s Loo to protest with mickey mouse mask, Rm2.4bil BMF Scandal, multi-billion losses in Proton cars, Perwaja, Kedah Cement, Rm12billion losses in Bank Negara’s Forex speculations thru’ his side-kick Nor Mamak Yakok, Rm12bils PKFZ Scandal, flopped MSC project, poorly planned Rm20 billion Putrajaya, billion Rm KLCC, Rm1.1 billion Crooked Bridge, etc… He also gave away valuable national assets to his cronies at give away prices, such as in Johor’s land n PTP. He also caused and caused massive brain drains whose exodus peaked during his reign as PM in the 80s & 90s. No other PM before him had ever close to his great misachievements in demolishing this beloved nation of into debris, that it will take decades to recover, if it’s lucky to be able to, what is his Vision-2020? It wud become his biggest empty talks, but he did the opposite to make Msia achieve “Failed Nation @2020” instead of Developed-Nation…

    Dr.M = Bapak Pemerosakan Malaysia!


  41. ahoo
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 11:31:49

    correction : sorry typo

    it be never happen,

    it will never happen


  42. Ray-of-Hope
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 12:03:57

    Don’tplaygod: “They only consider Malays who have left our shores as brain drain.”

    That reminds me of former British math genius Ms Sofiah Yusof (now become a pros), even though she’s only a half-Malay (father is a Pakistani), our Be-eNd Govmen was so quick to give her a full scholarship to study for a degree in UK univ. While back home our non-Malay students who scored 10 to 20 A1’s got deprived of a place in local univ. in their choice courses, what more to expect them to give these excellent kids the scholarships to study in the Univ. ???


  43. 2nd class
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 12:17:25

    In my opinion, the NEP and protectionism of Malay policy in Malaysia is actually ‘good’ because it make us evolve to be able to encounter any competition and win. The Malay is suppressed and prevented from their evolution to a better race. Imagine if they allow to be evolved and allowed to compete, our (chinese, sorry to be racist) success in malaysia and so many other countries would not be that great.

    There is always 2 sides of a coins. Being protected prevent them from competing with others and the opportunity left outside their green house is all OURS. Let them have the germs and we have the elephant.


  44. A true Malaysian
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 12:39:24

    2nd class,

    I am sorry to see you think that way. We should encourage our fellow Malay Malaysian to progress in the truest sense of achievement.

    I have no qualm at all Malaysian government, either under BN or PR to assist the weaker Malaysian (which you regard Malay as one). But, please help the Malay on meritocracy basis and at the same time, opportunity is given to all other races in fair and equitable basis.

    At the end of the day, we progress as Malaysian first, ethnicity second.

    I sympathize with some of our Malay brothers and sisters that they are really good, if not better than us, Chinese Malaysian. But, because of unfair policies under BN, these Malays are infact “victims” like us where many perceived they are at the top because of their skin colours, not their capabilities.

    This is the reality of Malaysia we are facing, and I consider this as “back-fire” of Umno’s own doings. Now, their supports from Malays and all races are declining fast, and this is what they fear most, not brain drain.


  45. clearwater
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 12:59:51

    2nd class,

    Please take A true Malaysian’s words to heart. Understand this is not a Malay vs Chinese, Indian & lain2 matter. Brain drain issues affect all Malaysians for different reasons, to differing degrees. Your thinking should not be a reflection of what you label yourself, even if you feel strongly that you are discriminated against in this country.

    Have a good day.


  46. CBP
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 13:38:00

    Brain drained? Our leaders says: no problem!. anyway our country doesn’t really need brain to survive, how many of you get your driving license without ” duit kopi “? contracts and projects…. Mark up the cost for commision le…simple. Our police… ( sigh, more like pirates to me ). It is better those with brain leave the country, go far far away, cause they like to compare, and complaint , always want to improve this and that, so tired! And as long as i provide them ( Bumi ) NEP , build more mosque , make sure they don’t have to speak other languages , they are happy and satisfied , they even call me Bapa Malaysia. And i carry out so called Mega Projects and i suck the tax payers money from there ( anyway it’s the pendatang’s money ) , i say those are First class Infrastructure and they believe…


  47. Richard Loh
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 13:49:55

    As long as umno control government mentality does not change, the brain drain will keep flowing out. How can you tolerate ministers calling you pendatang, u tak suka, balik China, India etc and the high IQ DPM, will defend the malay rights to the last drop of blood. We all had and continue to tell them that we had never question them on their rights, it just that they want to keep on pushing this issue non stop for their own agenda.

    Sad and sick indeed and we just cannot do anything but just to squeeze our own balls.


  48. Dr Hsu
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 14:19:25

    A True Malaysian

    Will try to put a tag on ‘brain drain’ later as u have so knidly suggested.

    Been very busy and this post was written last evening in Starbuck while waiting for friends to meet .


  49. Rennie Ho
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 14:57:26

    Talking about the many gifted and successful Malaysians that has made it abroad, try googling
    “Olivia Lum” and read about this lady born in Kampar Perak and what she has achieved, what she’s worth in Singapore. Actually we in Singapore are extremely grateful for all the former Malaysians who chose to make our shores their home due most of them contributed to the success of our country. More often than not, Malaysians who made it abroad did it all by sheer hard work and their competitiveness in the new adopted land. It pays to when meritocracy
    comes into play and one sees the reward after ones sacrifice. May many more Malaysians find their way back home and help develop Malaysia back to it’s former glory but I hope, not at the expense of my country.


  50. lyon
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 15:26:27

    What an eye-opener!


  51. Kongkor
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 18:29:22

    This I suppose is the net result of the NEP embraced by UMNO supported by all the BN component parties.

    Sad but reality bites!


  52. Lim
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 20:48:09

    The socalled brains in Malaysia are very conceited as they are thinking too highly of themselves. One should realise that in Malaysia there is no self accclaim brain but bad rubbish. As far as the Malaysian authorities are concern it is the “good riddance of bad rubbish” for those who want to leave the country.


  53. klm
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 21:42:54

    A critical review of Malaysia

    I was going through a number of papers on Global Competitiveness. If one looked into the numbers, the potential of Malaysia is quite obvious.

    In these studies, Malaysia is always slightly above average but never rises to the top 10. It looks like there is a permanent speed limiter holding the potential back. Hence, Dr Hsu’s question – what went wrong? Why is Malaysia consigned to be mediocre?

    One way to look at it is to see the NEP and NDP as an in build speed limiter. NEP was designed to slow the progress to give the Malay community a chance to catch with the other communities.

    NEP was not designed to use for long period. And it was designed to help those who needed help. Unfortunately, this was hijacked by the UMNO politicians and businessmen cronies for their own ends. The rest is history.

    Unfortunately, Malaysia is now stuck with the permanent speed limiter.

    Look at the IMD World Competitiveness Scoreboard. Malaysia is placed number 18 – a respectable positon. But look at the countries above it. These are the USA, Singapore, Hong Kong, and most of Western European countries.
    These are countries that are dynamic and efficient. And it will be difficult for Malaysian to move pass them. Unless, Malaysia is able to remove its shackle it is wearing.

    Unfortunately, for the NEP shackle, many speedsters have to find other avenues. Hence the brain drain. Until and unless, the shackle is removed, this trend will continue.

    Also, unfortunately for Malaysia, the world and it are on a superhighway. A vehicle with a speed limiter is not able to increase speed to catch up with others.

    Today, we are stuck with a vehicle moving in the slower lane. For those who can speed, I suggest you go get a faster vehicle – a Ferrari, so that you can move faster on the superhighway. Jump off the old jalopy. Dont regret.

    My kids are all not here. I have no regrets for them to leave.


  54. LangChiaPek
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 22:08:22

    We all shall wait no longer in less than 3 years when the next GE comes and vote out UMNO and BN, and put Malaysia back on track.

    Those UMNO and BN supporters can just migrate to Iraq where they all belong.


  55. petestop
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 23:19:15

    Indeed, and MM LKY also stated so in his memoirs.

    He asked Dr M whether he is concerned so many talented Malaysian leaving by the drove and Dr M just said good riddance.

    So, the crafty old man just go about offering Asian Scholarship to the region brightest and smartest to study in Singapore, who more likely than not stayed on to become PR and eventually citizens and contribute to the “small dot” of a country as Dr M likes to look down on to be the ONLY developed country in ASEAN.

    Let’s put it simply, it is all about Race to the BeEnders…

    They even discriminate the ex-Communist, only the Malay Communist are allowed back to M’sia and if you read Rashid Maidin memoirs, the M’sia govt even sponsored their trip to the Mecca.

    But the won’t allow Chin Peng to come back to Sitiawan…. and we all know why.

    They even break their own Peace Agreement.
    Says a lot about the people in govt, does’nt it?


  56. Aussie Malaysian
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 23:22:01

    I do not know whether it is appropriate for me to comment or not as I have migrated and is living in Australia.

    I read this article and the many comments with a bit of nostalgia as I was one of those who left our beloved country because of the NEP and resultant discriminations I faced. I do NOT claim to be of the same calibre of the outstanding Malaysians who had made it big in a foreign land. I am just an average family man who love God.

    I am a Chinese and an accountant and worked in Australia for over 20 years. Our two older sons are specialist doctors happily serving in our adopted country. Our third son is also doing very well in the commersial field. They are contributing positively to Australia.

    I would be just as happy to serve in Malaysia had it not been for the ridiculous NEP where I was discriminated. At least here, we can study and work hard and still get ahead in our careers and life. Our sons have all the opportunities in their professional pursuits.

    The sad thing is that even today, we still meet ex-Malaysians who come over in recent months because of the frustrations of having to put up with the NEP and other discriminatory Government policies against them. This tells us that good people are still leaving the country.

    I believe it is right and just to assist all those who are disadvantaged, irrespective of race and give them a helping hand. There are just as many poor and disadvantaged Malays as there are in the other races. We should help ALL so that the country can progress and move ahead.

    It is time the government wakes up and do the right thing by the people and give equal rights to ALL Malaysians who are born and bred in the country.


  57. Hee
    Jun 30, 2009 @ 23:25:38

    Don’t you people understand already, we do not, I repeat, we do not want you here!!, giving your ancestor a citizenship here is an act of defeat by us due to british gun more powerful than us. It is our hope that you people will extinct in the land previously called “Tanah Melayu”. We will not recognised you as a fellow Malaysian, you are forever immigrant in this country, except few that are willing to assimilate with the majority.


  58. klm
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 00:25:02

    Hee. That was a very nasty statement. It is very bad taste. You give Malaysian a bad name. You are an ugly Malaysian.


  59. Atila
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 00:57:30

    Dr Hsu

    My friend a Malay, a consultant and even directors in china companies, now being fished by Saudi King to run USD6Billion project.

    Its not racial that we are brain dead, its the Malaysia Govt dont want honest and honour people around. All corrupt.


  60. casper
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 02:21:43

    You are an idiot Hee. In jest or otherwise, what you have written is incriminating, seditious – bringing harm onto yourself – bodoh.

    Don’t you know every little entry, you leave a foot trail that can be tracked. Really bodoh.


  61. Atila
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 05:46:09

    Allah created the world for everybody. Amen.


  62. Dr. Khaw
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 07:15:33

    I agree with 2nd class writer above that the NEP and protectionism of Malay policy in Malaysia actually weakens the Malay themselves. It is just like human defence system; your body needs to be subjected to various bugs & bacteria so that the defence system goes into full force. The Malay being cocooned will only weak their defence system.
    Dr M used to say that Malaysia would be a developed nation by 2020. I doubt it. Look around you which Muslim country is a developed nation?

    Pakistan – a hell hole!
    Iran – another hell hole!
    Indonesia – no chance

    There is something in Islam that prevent an Islamic nation to progress. Perhaps Dr Hsu would like to write an artcle on this subject. This one will be explosive!


  63. zms
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 07:24:04

    Brain drain – everyone is aware about, me, the govt, our competitors..everyone. But for me, at the end of the day, you answer your own questions. What am I looking for? Am I happy or am I not? Would I be happier if I go abroad? Is happiness gauged in terms of monetary gains or family values or personal achievements at any level it may be.

    The fact is, no right thinking person is happy with this situation of brain drain. Everyone (almost I guess) knows that the current govt is not doing enough to cure this cancer. Most professionals are bedazzled with the so-called better opportunities in those wealthier countries. I am inclined too and have refused many offers..but I stayed back..why?

    If everyone follows this trend of migrating then who will fight for improvement in this lovely country. No country is perfect in my honest observation. Europe has unemplyment rate of 20%. Singapore is getting to mechanical and lacking in humanity. China, Vietnam, US, Aust..are these countries perfect? Are their government better in all aspects from ours. Certainly they have their shortcomings too. But their people fight, and work hard. To increase the standard of living. To cherish the bounties of their nations.

    I should stop talking lilke I am in full support of the current govt. No I’m not. But I believe in this country. I believe with all the little things I can do here, I am contributing to the general well being of fellow Malaysians. I may not earn as much as you guys who opted for migration, but I honestly believe deep in my heart that I am much happier than half of these people.

    So people, please flock out and enrich those countries. Increase their GDP. Pay taxes to their government. Pay roaming charges to their telcos. I will continue my fight from within.


  64. Trackback: Top Posts «
  65. A true Malaysian
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 08:59:29

    zms has raised very good points on “happiness”. Happiness cannot be measured by mere Ringgit and Sen. It depends on our belief system, it is a relative term, and it cannot be measured in absolute term.

    What people asking for is fair and equitable policies and practices. Is that too much we ‘demand’? I read RPK’s articles about Islam. Islam is all about clean, fair and equal treatment to all, irrespective of whether you are Muslims or non-Muslims, but apparently, this does not jive with the belief system of Umno. Why? Which is at fault?

    Anyway, all arguments point to the only hope for Malaysia is on Pakatan Rakyat. Let’s give them a try. This is the least we can do at the present movement. I personally has no hope on BeEnders.


  66. A true Malaysian
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 10:43:44

    Dr. Hsu,

    Thank you for allowing my request.

    Your forum here is soon becoming a ‘research’ source for BeEnders to do post-mortem and ask “What has gone wrong with us?”

    Or, is there sufficient time for them not to reach the post-mortem stage?


  67. vsvsv
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 13:04:30


    Did anyone notice there’s a hike in our electricity bill lately? What worst is some of us will only get the actual reading in 2 months. So by the total accumulation of this 2 months, my meter unit shot so high up and TNB is charging me $0.40 PER UNIT!!! Pls help us….


  68. Dr Hsu
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 13:58:06

    Anyone can explain why vsvsv’s electricity bills have shot up recently?

    Electricity tariff should come down since when the petrol prices went to 140 , TNB used that to increase rate, and now that petrol price is much lower, we should be getting a lower rate, going by the same argument used by TNB.

    A True Malaysian,
    as per your suggetion, I have added a category “brain drain’ and I have grouped some of the articles on brain drain under that category. But in this particular wordpress format, category is right at the bottom of the page, so the readers will have to scroll down to the very end of the page.


  69. Chauncey Gardener
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 14:45:31

    A great example of “brain drain” would be the following person.

    The head of the prestigious Economics Dept in the renown London School of Economics is Prof Danny Quah from Penang.

    Consider this : would he have been head of the economics dept in Universiti Malaya if he was in Malaysia ?

    Most likely not. And yet, he is now head of one of the best faculties in the world.


  70. Nick
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 15:12:09

    What a good article by Dr. Hsu. So many contributors and good ones too. I agree with clearwater: “The world is still an oyster for a young man with drive and ambition, even if Malaysia may not be.” I educated my 2 kids abroad with Fa-Ma scholarship and both have solid jobs abroad. Talking about “brain drain”, do you know that the numbers emigrating from the UK exceeds those seeking immigration. This went on for many years until only recently when it was the other way round. I look at this issue of “brain drain” as ‘not a loss for Malaysia’ because over time, it will work itself out. Those who work abroad can save more and send money home or invests in higher-end properties. If and when they do return, they will get better paying jobs and able to discharge their responsibilities better. So, they is a delay effect. Malaysia will eventually get some benefit from these overseas trained sons and daughters. Good luck to Pua Kien Seng. May his Company come up with more inventions and hopefully one day, he will invest in our Country.


  71. batu giant
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 15:12:33

    I believe brain drain not only the chinese community. Recently in Melbourne’s tram, I met a Malay Structure Engineer, when ask whether he is interested to go back to Malaysia, he said not while he is alive, when ask why, he said it is too hard to bodek the boss in the government department so that will get promotion.


  72. clearwater
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 15:25:47


    I checked thru my past 12 months’ electricity bills. There have been changes in tariff but these are not significant enough to cause a big difference month to month. The last 2 months my usage was high, significantly exceeding 800 KWH, which excess is charged above 40 sen per unit. I attributed it to heavy use of air conditioning because of the current hot spell.

    If your meter is read once every 2 months, and other times you get estimates, you tend to get large variances in your monthly billings and some element of overpricing in heavier ‘usage’ months because of the graduated tariff structure. Arrange with TNB to have monthly readings.


  73. klm
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 15:44:15

    Dr. Hsu. I am not trying to be a smart aleck, but I need to suggest a small correction to your Taiwan and Malaysia comparison. Just to be fair to Malaysia. Hope you don’t mind. 😦

    In 1980, Taiwan per capita GDP was already higher than Malaysia. Maybe the average income then may appear to be lower that in Malaysia.

    Per Capita comparison bwtn Taiwan and Malaysia (USD)



    Otherwise the conclusion is the same.

    Editor: Thanks for pointing this out, but as you have said , the conclusion is the same. I may have mistaken SOuth Korea for Taiwan in term of GDP at 1980.


  74. klm
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 15:47:13

    As for the electricity bill, I remembered reading sometime ago, that TNB was increasing the tariff for usage above the base amount. Check this out.


  75. Atila
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 18:44:46

    I m a pure malay and i dont benefit from NEP.

    NEP is meant for the one group malay elite from the grandparents to children to grandchildren.

    NEP must be taken away.


  76. beacon
    Jul 01, 2009 @ 23:22:08

    Like many people before me, I have left Malaysia for good on 15th Feb 2008. This is after 14 years working experience with several multinationals under my belt!! Frankly speaking, life was confortable back then. We were living in a comfortable condo in the vicinity of BU, I was taking home a decent pay, and we travel overseas for visitation once a year.

    My reason for the big move is also due to the political situation back home. I don’t see it improving anytime soon and I do not want my children to go through the kind of blatant discrimination experience by the non bumis. Therefore, I sold of my condo, quit my well paying job, bought a one way ticket, and travel to Australia permanently.

    Time flies, it is also 1.5 years since my relocation. It was tough starting over again in a foreign land but I have no regrets. Everyday when I wake up, I will remind myself that today will be better than yesterday. Truthfully, life is getting better for me. We will be moving into our new house mid July, and I will be getting a promotion soon, …..


  77. 过路客
    Jul 02, 2009 @ 00:34:18


    congratulation for making it great down under…

    I am now a frustrated man in malaysia too…

    I may pack my bags and join you in down under soon…

    Migrate for the betterment of our children.



  78. vsvsv
    Jul 02, 2009 @ 00:56:30

    Dr, Clearwater,

    I checked my bill and yes previous month was just estimation from TNB. That bill we were told to pay up but when the TNB people came this month to read the meter, they ignored what they had estimated. They took my current meter reading minus my last 2 month’s reading. Yes they deduct what I have paid last month but by taking the two months usage in one bill, it blown up the figure and therefore the calculation for big consumption is way different. I called TNB to check my meter and they came. Said nothing wrong with it but admitted the calculation of 2 month bill is the factor. Can they do this?? Why we have to pay the estimation and yet we are slap with heavy bill? TNB said 2 month reading system is there to solve their manpower problem. But this system allow them to relax, save and profit while we “stupid consumer” pay for it?

    Come on we must do something about it. Don’t just ignore as my friend’s bill shoot up from $70 to $120 recently.


  79. beacon
    Jul 02, 2009 @ 07:55:14


    Making it great down-under?? No yet. I am just starting out. Hopefully in time to come…..

    A lot of people harbour the thought of moving overseas but very few will actually make the move. This is because people do not want to move away from their comfort zone and venture into the unknown.

    The fact that you mentioned you ‘may’… have also indicated that you are undecided. Well! Migrating or not, to each his/her own.

    For me, Malaysia has gone to the point of no return. The country has been overtaken by South Korea and Taiwan in terms of development. It will again be overtaken by Vietnam soon!! Corruption is blatant and deeply rooted in the govt, police force, … etc.

    Many Vietnamese were ill treated when they spent their time in Malaysia waiting for transit to their adopted countries in the 80s and 90s. There will come a time when Malaysians will be looked down upon by the Vietnamese. Every dog has its day!!!


  80. Canopy
    Jul 02, 2009 @ 09:02:53

    Same as you Beacon,
    I have left malaysia on May 2008 and heading to Australia with my wife. I got lucky as I get PR and at a same time got approval internal transfer to aus office, by the time arrive here, I got job secure and after 3 months working pay increase! Next year we are looking forward to buy a decend house and start planning for baby. We will be getting First Home Grant & Baby Bonus from aussie goverment!!
    Back in Malaysia, I don’t get anything for the past 8 years working accept for pay tax! I have a good life and both of us have a good decend pay and work. It only we miss our friends and family back!

    May god bless you all


  81. 过路客
    Jul 03, 2009 @ 00:21:15


    I am a frustrated man in malaysia!

    I shall definitely be at down under joining you and Canopy if I cannot overcome the frustration…

    Canada is not a good alternative as reported by a friend of mine who return after trying to live there for 5 years and spend all his savings.

    YES! agree, Malaysia has gone to the point of no return.



  82. beacon
    Jul 03, 2009 @ 07:06:56


    What makes you think Autralia is a better alternative??

    I have a friend’s BIL who came here last year. He still could not land himself a job in the telco industry after searching for so long. Now he is resorting to casual jobs in the supermarket or fast full outlets to survive.

    I was lucky as I have 8 years experience in one of the US multinational back in Malaysia. When I mentioned the company’s name during my interview, the response from the interviewer was, “Ahhhh….. “. You see, it rings their bell.

    I have heard of people that could not make it down under after couple of year trying. They threw in the towel and head back.

    I dont know what industry you are involved in but I can tell you that it is a big risk you will have to take. If you dont make it, you may end up doing casual or mandane work in the supermarkets and fast food chains. You are still able to live fairly well but you will have to ask yourself if this is what you want.

    For me, I am very much settled down and I will move on with life from here. There is no turning back….. or why would I even think of going back to Malaysia?? If I want to go see girls in bikinis, the beach is less then 4kms from my house. If I want to go picnic with my kids, there is a big back less then 2kms from my house. Life is good!!


  83. Pen Datang
    Jul 03, 2009 @ 09:54:04

    Google Wiki and we get a different take. Looks as though the author had a different drum to beat!

    And this created a flight of fantasy on another website

    Give me a break

    “…We could have sold millions of it and earns billions. NOt to mention the up and downstream industries that could have been spurned from this one invention…..”

    “Trek Technology and IBM began selling the first USB flash drives commercially in 2000. Singaporean company Trek Technology sold a model dubbed the “ThumbDrive,” and IBM marketed the first such drives in North America, with its product the “DiskOnKey” (which was manufactured by the Israeli company M-Systems)……”

    and about Phison

    Thomson Financial Business Description:
    The Group’s principal activity is designing USB flash controller and related NAND flash applications. Other activities include designing integrated circuits and provision of system integration services. Products include controller integrated circuits for card readers, pen drive, SD/MMC, flash disk, CF/DOM and others. The Group exports its products to Asia, Europe, the United States of America, Australia and Africa.


  84. Pekay
    Jul 04, 2009 @ 10:35:28

    Pen datang is missing the point . The issue at large is the untold damage being done to the country with the best brains leaving its shores. I recently saw an interview on an ABC program with the Malaysian Home Minister( or some similar appellation)about the plight of the many foreigners working as servants in Malaysia. It was quite an embarassing performance by the Minister. First his command of the English language was appalling, and I believe he should have used an interpreter if he is unable to speak the language intelligently. Secondly he showed such a lack of compassion for these victims of abuse. But what was most curious was his total lack of understanding of economics. In response to a question about whether these servants should be given a day off each week, he flatly said no and asked the interviewer to imagine the streets being littered with these people. I would think if they are earning an income, they would spend some of it , and benefit the local economy. This is one clear evidence of the type of poorly educated kampong clown that occupies the seat of power in the poor nation Malaysia. So don’t get distracted by “thumb drive ” and focus on the real issues. We need intelligent well educated people to rule the country, not half-wits.


  85. ktak
    Jul 11, 2009 @ 14:56:47

    潘健成成長紀實影片第一,二,三集:拚博 [Pua Kien Seng Story]


  86. fikiran-syndicate
    Jul 15, 2009 @ 16:00:40

    I have read almost all the comment about this post. There are all sorts of blame listed including religion and races. If this goes on I believe we can have lots more of it.
    Why can’t we change it ourselves because this country belongs to all of us and everyone is duly responsible for it.
    So when do you cast your vote, what is going on your mind? Money making opportunities? Projects? “Inside cable?”
    You are given opportunities to change our reps and how did you execute that?
    Or you avoid the responsibility by not voting?
    Because you believe that nothing will change?

    Imagine a Taiwanese leader said this in his campaign:
    “Our party will give you a new bridge if you vote me”
    Do you think he will win there? Now how about us?


  87. Alfred Kok TL
    Jul 24, 2009 @ 01:26:42

    In the Land of the blind, One-eye Jack is King, so lament not my friends, for Malaysia should now be a Land of plentiful opportunities to many, i.e half-brain and quarter-brain , since most now remaining are idiot, cuckoo and ostrich; after the recent great Brain drain exodus.

    We, in-fact should be congratulating ourselves for this ” windfall ” of living in a Society of zero competition, we can be CEO with just a Std 6 certificate or University Dean with a Puspakomic degree or reaping Billions of RM by supplying shit-water to the people. { can export too }

    Where on this Planet can life be so comfortable, so free and so relaxing ? So what more do you want ???

    A One-Big Party State with Gestapos ??? Hail VW !!! or Hallo BMW !!! ???

    Please count me out then.

    My advice, brudders, is better not to see One Hill as higher than the other Ones, as plains are better for cultivation and dwelling too. So better to stop Shadow Boxing, time after time. Try shadow dancing or Squash instead.

    Finally, if you believe you are really very Brainy, you should be able to thrive anywhere, you should be able to develop and lead all the required changes, paradigm shifts and quantum leaps and not howling at the moon like were-Houdini.

    ” Don’t ask what the nation can give you, ask what can you give the nation ” President Kennedy.


  88. Raymond Chua
    Aug 20, 2009 @ 12:32:55

    According to what i know, Mr.Pua did try to request for scholarship and some fund for the reasearch and development for this pen drive. But he received negative feedback.

    At the end he still wants to develop Malaysia. Not his fault.



  89. akincitr
    Aug 28, 2009 @ 20:43:03

    thank you for this information. I hope u ll go on helping us to learn this kind of important issues Eğlence ve hüznün bir arada yaşandığı bir dünya.!!!


  90. Rob
    Apr 19, 2011 @ 12:45:35

    .. so what if he really invented in taiwan .. if i would be pua … i will also run away from ths country ..because he noes that .. the government of Malaysia would eat tons of his money … P/s because he is a Malaysian Chinese ~ hahaha


  91. Alfonso Sequira
    Aug 30, 2011 @ 07:48:10

    Ask not what your country gives you, but ask what you give to your country. That’s how American could send men to the moon. Thinking about that why didn’t black engineers and physicists move to other countries even though they were racially discriminated,just checked USA past housing laws which was intended to create a wealth gap between black and white.


  92. strickened
    Mar 07, 2012 @ 19:32:23

    Really? it may be a lost to the country but then again all the ‘monies earn’ may go to somebody else/other ppl…it is still a lost to the country….you know what i mean.


  93. Union
    Jun 28, 2012 @ 21:28:26

    Malaysia sent man to space too lmfao…a pretty face to space and cost malaysian citizens’ billion of our money. BN (UMNO) uses billions of Malaysian money to do their party activities, instead of using their own party’s money. To them, they own Malaysia.


  94. malay
    Dec 07, 2012 @ 05:23:12

    Brain drain is not about racism. It is all about greed and politics.

    Can’t blame Mr Pua for migrating his invention to Taiwan. His case wasn’t about brain drain. It was about lack of awareness and vision of the government or something else. We do not know the real story behind it. Malaysia, at that time of Mr Pua’s inventions, was already an electronic and semiconductor nation and had many RnD efforts going on in almost all area of study.

    Mr Pua’s invention could be a big threat to some semiconductor companies owned by the US. Remember Seagate, Western Digital and other secondary storage companies already established in Malaysia at that time? Intel, AMD? These are direct competitors and main producers for flash memory (like the Mr Pua’s pendrive technology).

    We do not know what PATENT / Protection agreement between the government and such multinational companies. What I see is at that time, the government was so supportive of local inventions. So it must be something else.

    My best guess is that there were a lot of foreign pressure against mr Pua’s invention at that time and the government must handle it carefully so as not to offend these ‘powerful’ companies. Remember, a HD / secondary storage / flash memory are not so difficult to make judging from the kind of advance semiconductor technologies we had those days. But up till now, none are made by Malaysian companies as malaysia’s own. WHY? You should check the long-term agreement between the government and the mentioned manufacturers.


  95. Nate
    Dec 08, 2012 @ 10:14:22

    Taiwan (and Korea) went through the same route as Malaysia. Providing low cost labour to the semiconductor industry. In fact they were impoverished countries when paced against Malaysia, a rich country in those days.

    INMHO the difference is they had the “warrior” spirit so unlike your poster “malay”. They struggled and fought and did not make excuses for their failures.

    It’s obvious from the sentiments expressed the education system has bred a new type of leader who lives in fear of “powerful” people and imagined bogeymen. Just a bunch of no-hopers!


  96. Glovis Yan
    Aug 04, 2013 @ 10:01:30

    This is indeed a sad new. However, I am doubt he would be succeeded in Malaysia also because the government might not fund his invented project too. I am glad that his pen drive invention is materialise in Taiwan.


  97. Santosh
    Jan 28, 2016 @ 17:25:27

    Ask not what your country gives you, but ask what you give to your country. That’s how American could send men to the moon. Thinking about that why didn’t black engineers and physicists move to other countries even though they were racially discriminated,just checked USA past housing laws which was intended to create a wealth gap between black and white.


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