COVID-19 Financing Bill tabled for first reading


THE Temporary Measures For Government Financing (Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)) Bill 2020 was tabled for first reading at the Dewan Rakyat today.

The bill provides for temporary measures relating to government financing to reduce the impact of COVID-19 by increasing the ceiling amount for the total amount of the sums that may be raised under the Loan (Local) Act 1959 and Government Funding Act 1983 to establish a COVID-19 Fund.

It is also to allow the monies in the COVID-19 Fund to be applied and appropriated for the purposes of programmes under the economic stimulus packages and economic recovery plans, and to provide for related matters.

A sum of RM45 billion was allocated under the stimulus package and economic recovery plan with wage subsidy, job retention and workers’ hiring incentive, as well as training assistance programmes receiving the highest allocation totalling RM16.8 billion.

It also involves RM11.2 billion for the Bantuan Prihatin Nasional programme; small-scale projects (RM4 billion); and RM2 billion each for skills enhancement programme and PENJANA SME Financing; PRIHATIN SME Grant (RM1.9 billion); electricity bill discounts (RM500 million); special aid for varsity students (RM300 million); and MY30 public transport subsidy (RM200 million).

Deputy Finance Minister Mohd Shahar Abdullah when tabling the bill said the second reading would also be made during this sitting.