Honorary Fellow 2019

  • 2020: Speaker, State Legislative Assembly - Perak, Malaysia
  • 2019: Honorary Fellow & Doctorate in Letters, Swansea University
  • 2010: Minister of International Trade and Majlis Amanah Rakyat, Perak State
  • 2009: Member of Legislative Assembly – Perak State, Malaysia

Mohammad Zahir graduated from what was then University College, Swansea in 1991 with a degree in Economics and Development Studies. He has devoted his career to facilitating and fostering economic growth in his country serving in agencies and organisations including the Ministry of International Trade and Majlis Amanah Rakyat (an agency that facilitates growth in indigenous entrepreneurship and economy). He was elected to the Perak State Legislative Assembly in 2009 and re-elected in 2013.

Since 2009, during his tenure as the State Executive Councillor, he has spearheaded many projects that have helped eliminate poverty and ensured equal wealth distribution in the state of Perak.  A major initiative is ‘Dermasiswa’, a financial package for students pursuing a range of courses from foundation to professional degree courses. Between 2009 and 2015, the system benefited 94,331 students with a total disbursement amount of RM64.6 million, the equivalent of over £12m. Mohammad Zahir also chaired a special committee under the State Economic Development initiative, and proposed the ‘small township development’ project which involves raising the living standards of people in rural areas. To date, 13 townships have been developed, bringing immeasurable improvements to more than 500,000 people. Under Mohammad Zahir’s leadership, the state of Perak has grown at an unprecedented rate, and new developments are promising further prosperity; the Greater Kamunting, for example, is expected to create more than 90,000 jobs by 2030.

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