by AFIQ AZIZ / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL
TABUNG Ekonomi Kumpulan Usaha Niaga (Tekun Nasional) recently provided financial assistance to taxi drivers and operators of Airport Limo who have been severely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Entrepreneur and Cooperative Development Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said the assistance would cover the drivers’ maintenance capital, installation of natural gas vehicles, taxi refurbishment cost, as well as deposits or repayments of taxi purchases.
“This initiative will also be able to help taxi drivers provide quality taxis comparable to services provided by Airport Limo taxis that operate at the country’s main entrances of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and KLIA2,” he said yesterday.
The financial assistance, amounting to RM106,000, was disbursed to 53 drivers and taxi operators of Airport Limo (M) Sdn Bhd who are also members of the Malaysian Taxi/Limousine and Car Rental Drivers and Operators Association (PETEKMA).
Wan Junaidi said the incentive is also expected to increase interest among people in the bottom 40% group in choosing the taxi as a way to generate extra income in the wake of the challenging economic situation.
To date, he added that Tekun Nasional has also channelled up to RM36.09 million in financing to 4,526 drivers and taxi operators nationwide.
“I hope the aid by Tekun can help taxi drivers, in line with the agenda that has been set by PETEKMA,” Wan Junaidi added.
The financial assistance is part of the RM100 million additional allocation under the short-term National Economic Recovery Plan that is aimed at assisting micro entrepreneurs whose businesses have been badly affected by the pandemic.
Last month, Tekun Nasional also disbursed some RM28 million to 3,900 micro entrepreneurs under the Tekun Business Recovery Scheme (TBRS).
The government had previously also allocated RM200 million under the Prihatin Rakyat Economic Stimulus Package via the Covid Business Recovery-Micro scheme.
Wan Junaidi said the entire RM200 million has been disbursed to affected entrepreneurs and the ministry is looking forward to continuing assisting more entrepreneurs.
The TBRS scheme provides entrepreneurs financing of up to RM10,000 at an annual interest rate of 3.5%.