KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia’s subsidies are anticipated to amount almost RM80 billion in 2022, said Finance Minister, Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz.
According to the minister, he stated that the government had provided various consumption subsidies comprising petrol, diesel, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), cooking oil, flour and also electricity. He said that these subsidies are to reduce inflationary pressures on Malaysians.
In the recently released 100th People’s Financial Report, he also said that the overall expected spending on consumption subsidies this year totalling almost RM80 billion is the highest in history of subsidies sustained by any government.
“When added with the other additional support like social welfare aid, agricultural assistance, aid for fishermen and more, the amount of subsidies are anticipated to be nearing RM80 billion,” he explained.
Despite that, he stated that the government has continued to pursue policies that are generally targeted to curb inflation in order to prevent excessive price hikes while at the same time still providing direct support to those in need.
According to him, the policy is seen to have produced a situation that is regarded as manageable, particularly when compared to other nations.
Tengku Zafrul stated that a study on the holistic cessation of subsidies as well as the redistribution of those savings to those in desperate need, is part of the government’s strategy to ensure the country’s economic sustainability for medium and long term.
Additionally, he also said that substantial amounts of government funds have been spent to mitigate the impacts of the pandemic. This includes the national vaccination programmes and also the Wage Subsidy Programme, set in place to allow for businesses to maintain employees.
In an endeavour to rebuild Malaysia’s funds and fiscal resiliency, the holistic cessation of subsidies demonstrated the government’s fair and responsible approach to ensuring the B40 group are safeguarded, he explained.
Furthermore, he stated that the finance ministry is assessing the country’s fiscal resources that needs to be strengthened to rebuild Malaysia’s socio-economic resiliency, particularly for the B40 and M40 income groups.
This foresight is also a move to reduce the debt of the future generations to come, he continued.
Also in the report, it was shown that 92 firms had filed for the Danajamin PRIHATIN Guarantee Scheme (DPGS) as at June 10. Out of the total which applied, 61 firms were approved and the amount approved was RM2.08 billion.
The Wage Subsidy Programme on the other hand had shown RM20 billion being distributed to over 350,000 employers in order to almost 3 million local employees. This was an effort to reduce the overall unemployment rate.
Breaking down the Wage Subsidy Programme, the fourth edition saw RM2.555 billion distributed to 163,431 employers to retain 1,916,733 workers as at June 10 this year.
At the same time, the fifth edition saw RM183.123 million in subsidies distributed to over 7,385 employers to retain 105,300 employees.
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