M'sian YouTuber's video pointing out reasons for S'pore's success watched 212,000 times

Singapore and Malaysia started out about six decades ago on the same footing.

Jean Chien Tay | October 06, 2021, 06:06 PM

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A Malaysian YouTuber has made a video, "Malaysia vs Singapore, why are we so BEHIND?", which turned out to be widely viewed with more than 212,000 views and 8,900 likes.

The video centred on the stark economic difference between Singapore and Malaysia proved to be a hit for the channel "Mr Money TV", as the views for the video was 16 times more than the YouTuber's recent videos.

In his video, the content creator marvelled at the stark economic differences between Singapore and Malaysia, such as pointing out that the average salary in Singapore is five times higher than Malaysia, despite sharing similarities in their founding days.

"But, what led to such difference(s) six decades later? How come Singapore is so wealthy and Malaysia is so behind?"

The YouTuber identified three main reasons that he believes led to Singapore's success -- the development of human capital, the salary of civil servants, and the housing policy.

Developing human capital through education

Pointing out the lack of natural resources in Singapore, the YouTuber mentioned the "strong focus" of developing human capital in the city-state.

He credited Singapore's development of human capital to the education system, which devotes US$1,600 (S$2173) to education per capita, while Malaysia spends US$500 (S$679) on education per capita.

"Singapore basically spends around three times more on education compared to Malaysia", he added.

Citing policy research done by Asia Society's Centre for Global Education, the YouTuber then mentioned the recruitment of "top students" as teachers to educate Singapore's future generation.

In comparison, he shared personal accounts on teachers who "have no idea on the subject they are teaching about", and some who are "not even interested" in the subjects.

"Shitty" education system in Malaysia

The YouTuber then expressed his belief that students will "greatly benefit from good education", which could make a "huge difference" to their future economic success.

He then aimed a dig at some Malaysian ministers who were aware of the problems in the education system and decided to send their children to study overseas.

"Our education system is so shitty that it makes me angry", he added.

While saying that he feels "trapped" in the situation, he elaborated that parents could play a role in their children's education by sharing their experiences and encouraging their children to read.

"Singapore's civil servants are one of the highest paid in the world"

Sharing a quote from the late Lee Kuan Yew, "If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys", the YouTuber touched on the issue of low salary in Malaysia's public service.

While the average salary for a junior police officer in Singapore is about S$3,000 per month, their Malaysian counterparts can get paid as low as S$500 per month (RM1,500).

Meanwhile, the cost of living for an individual in Kuala Lumpur is estimated to be around S$1,061 (RM3,262), according to reports from The Malaysian Reserve.

With the low salary, he said he "wouldn't be surprised" that corruption can be "common practice".

Subsequently, he expressed his belief that the civil service will be able to attract more talent with better remuneration.

Housing policy contributing to social integration

Additionally, the content creator hailed Singapore's housing policy for contributing towards social integration.

The "well planned" HDB (Housing & Development Board) flat layouts and the "ethnic quota" also played a role for people from different familial and socio-economic backgrounds to interact with each other, he said.

Moreover, by building schools and relevant facilities in housing areas, Singapore was able to nurture "a generation integrated as a nation regardless of ethnicity", according to him.

While he acknowledged that it is "not easy" for Malaysia to replicate Singapore's methods, he shared his personal experience of encouraging his children to mingle with friends from different races.

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Top image via Mr Money TV