Thursday, January 08, 2009


Dr Mahathir Mohamed has called for a global boycott of the U.S Dollar and U.S made products, including Coca Cola in protest over U.S’s support for Israel.

Dr Mahathir’s utter contempt for U.S and complete hatred for Israel is almost like an article of faith. Thus, the call to boycott Coca Cola and anything American does not come as a surprise but is merely a reaffirmation of his long held view. Strange, he did not have the courage to call for a boycott of anything from Egypt and Jordan, Islamic countries having relationship with Israel.

Anyway, when Dr Mahathir calls on Malaysian’s to boycott U.S made products and say that “ you won’t die if you don’t drink Coca Cola”, he should rightfully highlight how much Malaysia is dependant on U.S. Then, right thinking Malaysians can make an informed decision whether we should really boycott U.S products.

What Malaysians ought to know is that Dr Mahathir has failed to divulge the fact that U.S is Malaysia’s single largest trading partner and in 2007 trade with U.S was valued at RM149.2 Billion and accounted for 13.4% of Malaysia’s global trade. For the period January to July 2008 trade with U.S stood at RM50.2 Billion. This are not some ‘kacang putih’ figures.

Further, U.S remains an important source of foreign direct investment in the manufacturing sector in Malaysia. In 2007, the U.S was the 4th largest source of foreign direct investment with total investment of RM3 Billion.

American multinational’s corporations have also made substantial investments in Malaysia and have brought with them suppliers and subcontractors to invest here. They have contributed to the building up of local supply chains.

Add to all these are the various preferential treatments, grants, trainings, scholarships and many other benefits which Malaysia is unashamed not to refuse or reject.

Thus, when Dr Mahathir tells Malaysians that “you won’t die if you don’t drink Coca Coca” he has also failed to reveal who the majority of the F&N Coca Cola (M) Sdn Bhd, employees are. Are the almost 1,400 employees of F&N Coca Cola (M) Sdn Bhd, Malays or Bangladeshis? Does the manufacturers of Coca Cola not provide employment for Malaysians ?

So, before we consider boycotting Coca Cola lets us be grateful that the manufacturers of Coca Cola is actually providing Malaysians with employment.

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