Putrajaya testing out e-Tunai Rakyat system

Govt agencies are preparing for the RM30 one-off digital stimulus programme through e-wallet service next year

pic by ARIF KARTONO

THE government is testing out the e-Tunai Rakyat system with e-wallet providers and government agencies to prepare for the RM30 one-off digital stimulus programme next year.

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng (picture) said Khazanah Nasional Bhd has been tasked to supervise its implementation and make an announcement on the participating e-wallet providers soon.

“If it is well received, the initiative can be repeated to involve more users, merchants and e-wallet providers,” he told the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.

Lim was responding to MP Khairy Jamaluddin’s (Barisan Nasional-Rembau) question on the implementation status of the RM30 one-off payment to Malaysians through an e-wallet service starting Jan 1 next year.

During the Budget 2020 announcement last October, Lim announced that Malaysians aged 18 years and above, earning RM100,000 and below a year, will be entitled to a one-off payment of RM30 that can be claimed from Jan 1 to Feb 29 next year.

The government had allocated RM450 million for the initiative which is expected to benefit 15 million Malaysians.

It is also to encourage the public, small businesses and retail stores to accept and use digital payments.

“The only thing that is required is an e-wallet account with a verified identification by selected service providers,” Lim said.

The initiative was part of a RM50.3 billion allocation to transform Malaysia into an entrepreneurial nation, which includes the transition to digital economy.

“Out of the RM50.3 billion, the government has allocated RM21.6 billion for the National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan to upgrade and expand the Digital Malaysia infrastructure.

“Meanwhile, RM28.7 billion is allocated for various digitalisation incentives such as the e-Tunai Rakyat, as well as guarantees and financing aids, including for entrepreneurs, small and medium businesses and Malaysian companies,” he added.

There are about 46 digital money (e-wallet) issuers comprising five banks and 41 non-bank firms.

Recently, The Malaysian Reserve reported that e-money transactions in the country are expected to cross RM12 billion this year.

Based on Bank Negara Malaysia’s electronic payment data, there were 1.92 billion transactions for e-money with a total value of RM11 billion.

For the January-May 2019 period alone, 832 million e-money transactions were recorded with a total value of RM6.3 billion.