The programme benefits a total of 322,177 employers and 2.6m workers under the Prihatin Rakyat Economic Stimulus Package
by ASILA JALIL / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL
THE Finance Ministry (MoF) has approved applications the first phase of the Wage Subsidy Programme (PSU1.0) amounting to RM12.68 billion as of Dec 25 last year, compared to RM12.61 billion approved a week earlier.
Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz (picture) said the programme will benefit a total of 322,177 employers and 2.64 million workers under the Prihatin Rakyat Economic Stimulus Package.
As for the second phase of the PSU1.0 under the Kita Prihatin Package, a total of RM418.67 million had been channelled to 39,203 employers to continue operating and maintain employment for 307,420 employees as at Dec 25. In the 35th Economic Stimulus Implementation and Coordination Unit Between National Agencies report, the minister said the Peka B40 Health Care Scheme received 191,737 claims between the period of July 1 and Dec 25 last year, valued at RM19.57 million.
Under the Hiring Incentive Programme and Training Assistance, 128,778 employees had secured employment which includes 102,623 people under the age of 40; 17,394 people in the age group between 40 and 60; as well as 7,417 apprentices and 1,344 people with disabilities.
Among the key industries and sectors actively hiring include manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade.
Tengku Zafrul also cited a Bloomberg report which ranked Malaysia in the fifth place as key investment and business destination among the world’s developing economies for 2021, surpassing China, Philippines, India and Indonesia.
“This is based, among others, on the potential for rapid economic recovery, as well as the country’s stable fiscal and financial position.
“Furthermore, based on the effective lockdown index, an international consultant predicts that Malaysia is among the three countries with the most room to control and alleviate the Covid-19 pandemic in 2021. Once this is done successfully, our economy is expected to rebound faster,” he said.
As for the Bantuan Prihatin Nasional 2.0 (BPN2.0), Tengku Zafrul said the ministry is still reviewing new applications and appeals.
The date of payment for the second phase will be announced soon, as well as new applications and appeals which are expected to be channelled starting this month, he said.
“For the Prihatin Special Grant 2.0, we are cross-checking new applications and appeals between the Inland Revenue Board and the Local Authority, and the results will be announced soon,” he said.
Meanwhile, the government’s MY30 initiative for the public transport subsidy, a total of RM127.74 million has been channelled for the subscription of 751,414 unlimited monthly public transport passes worth RM30 as at Dec 25 last year.
As announced under Budget 2021, the initiative is extended to this year to further promote mobility and reduce the burden of public transport costs for the public.
“The period for various tax and investment incentives through Penjana has also been extended through Budget 2021.
“This includes special tax rates for selected manufacturing companies that relocate to Malaysia and make new investments (incentives extended for another year until Dec 31, 2022); and tax incentives to companies in the selected services sector with a significant multiplier effect, with an income tax rate of 0%-10% only, for a period of 10 years.
“While the government is planning the nation’s economic journey post-Covid-19, certainly any decision must balance between existing resource management, as well as positive or multiplier impact in the short and long term. This approach will continue to be practised by the MoF in the formulation of each policy,” he added.