17 November 2007

What our embassies can do

The Star

I REFER to the report Growing bigger, but at what cost? (The Star, Nov 16).

I agree that the Government needs to review its policies and plans on the maintenance of embassies and consulates.

The increase in cost follows ithe expanded role of the country in the international arena. The Government needs to ascertain the Return on Investment (ROI) of these missions, quantifying the value of their contribution to the country in ringgit and sen.

A certain percentage of the ROI should and could be used to support the institutions, making them self-sustaining.

Another is to identify specific measures to reduce cost without compromising the performance of the institutions.

The Government should also consider turning the missions into one-stop centres for tourism and agriculture. Look also at advances made in communications technology to centralise backroom operations.

The Government also needs to look into the productivity aspects to raise and maximise it to offset the high costs.

Shah Alam.

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