Not completely against global trends though.
The affirmative action programme, launched in 1970, remains one of the most divisive aspects of Malaysia's multi-ethnic society.
It uniquely favours the Malay majority over the Chinese and Indian minorities.
Malays can buy homes at a discount and have privileged access to higher education and certain employment sectors, among other benefits.
In an interview for Singapore's Straits Times newspaper, Mr Najib said that ethnic quotas damaged his country's competitiveness and ran counter to global trends.
27 minutes ago