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Malaysia's government-led growth strategy beginning to flounder

Palm farms, which once strongly supported Malaysia's economic growth, are now casting dark shadows over the country's economic outlook.

KUALA LUMPUR -- Malaysia's once successful growth model, characterized by government-led industrial development, is beginning to show troubling signs of stress.

     One symbol of the country's public-sector-driven economic growth is the monotonous landscape along the bus route linking Kuala Lumpur, the capital, with the southern state of Johor. Passengers in expressway buses traveling along the route get bored soon after the four-hour ride begins as they watch endless wayside stretches of man-made palm forests.

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