KUALA LUMPUR – The Ministry of Finance (MOF) had paid out almost RM23 billion in the form of subsidies, grants, loans and more as at April 15 this year.
From that amount, about RM92.9 million were disbursed to over 13,892 companies in the form of grants and loans for the businesses to subscribe to digitalisation services.
Minister of Finance, Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz, explained that the subsidies and grants were part of a RM700 million allocation that was targeted to encourage small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and mid-tier companies (MTCs) for them to digitalise their operations and trade networks.
During the same period. the government received over 753 applications for Penjana Tourism Financing with 393 approved applications receiving RM79.1 million. He noted that this was under a RM600 million allocation for the micro SMEs (MSMEs) still affected by the effects of COVID-19.
The government also received 92 applications for DanaJamin Prihatin Guarantee Scheme (DPGS) which is a scheme worth RM50 billion which guarantees up to 80% of working capital for businesses approved under the scheme.
In the recent 93rd Laporan Kewangan Rakyat, the minister said 61 companies were approved with the total value of guarantees set at RM2.07 billion as of April 8, 2022.
Wage subsidy programme reduced unemployment rates
In regards to the Wage Subsidy Programme (PSU), Tengku Zafrul announced that RM20.683 billion was channelled to 357,703 firms in order to help them keep 2,956,121 local workers employed.
Additionally, collaboration between the government and the Social Security Organisation (Socso) had placed 51,037 employees as of March 31, 2022. This was through the Insentif Penggajian Jaminan Kerja initiative which the government had allocated RM2 billion budget for in 2022.
For the Self-Employed Persons (OBS) group, he highlighted that the government has offered 80% contribution matching assistance under its Plan 2, with individuals only requiring to pay 20%.
The OBS groups are divided into eight categories and includes SPS Asal, Gig, Jaja, Lain Upaya, Lancong, Seni, Tani and Usahawanita.
Collectively, 36,610 OBS contributed RM8.523 million as of April 17 this year, the minister added.
Regarding the social service protection scheme, he announced that 21,964 OBS contributed under Contribution Plans 2 and 4 with a 12-month coverage duration and total collection value of RM5.696 million.
Subsidies still to come
Meanwhile, Tengku Zafrul is urging the public to conduct cashless payments at government service counters as there is still the Cashless 2.0 campaign ongoing now until May 31, 2022.
There is RM10,000 cash prizes to be given out to 100 winners.
Aside from that, SMEs are called to apply for the Low Carbon Transition Facility, which the government has allocated RM1 billion for. This is in line with the nation’s objective of achieving the zero net carbon emissions target by 2050.
In a related vein, he explained that Malaysia is always committed to expediting the country’s transition towards green growth and attaining the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
He revealed that there are some initiatives being implemented through compatriots’ approach in order to further the country along in the journey towards carbon neutrality.
The strategy includes a plan to establish a Voluntary Carbon Market (VCM) via Bursa Malaysia as Malaysia’s first move towards carbon credit trading.
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