Not So Fast

Three weeks after taking over as Malaysia's Prime Minister, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is revealing that beneath his smooth exterior is a shrewd politician who just might play rough. Last week, Abdullah told reporters that two costly infrastructure projects awarded to businessman Syed Mokhtar al-Bukhary, one of the favorite industrialists of former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, might be renegotiated. In the case of the Bakun dam, a huge hydroelectric project on Borneo, Abdullah said he was "not sure" whether the government would resort to privatization. (Syed Mokhtar's GIIG Capital signed an agreement last August to buy 60% of the dam operator from...

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