Some 12.6m Malaysians benefit from BKM this year

BANTUAN Keluarga Malaysia (BKM), the direct cash assistance initiative announced in the Budget 2022 to help those in need to recover post-pandemic and ease the cost-of-living burden, is set to reach its target of 12.6 million individuals this year.

This makes it the highest direct cash assistance in the history of Malaysia, with an allocation of RM1.74 billion. In comparison, the maximum BKM rate is RM2,600 compared to Bantuan Rakyat 1 Malaysia (RM1,200) and Bantuan Sara Hidup (RM1,480). This is a 120% increase in assistance since the direct cash assistance initiative was first introduced.

In addition, the number of BKM recipients is 8.6 million compared to BSH’s 4.5 million recipients only. This increase is due to the eligibility limit for receiving BKM having been increased from earning RM4,000 or less per month for BSH to RM5,000 or less per month for BKM.

The Minister of Finance Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz (picture), said that the government will continue to monitor external factors that can have a negative impact on the domestic economic situation to ensure the cost of living is controlled.

“The government is also constantly monitoring the current situation and is confident that its policies, both in terms of direct and indirect assistance such as basic needs subsidies, are aimed at ensuring that the welfare of the people is always protected,” he added.

BKM Phase 2, with an allocation of RM1.74 billion, will benefit four million households, 1.2 million senior citizens and 3.4 million single individuals. Each eligible recipient will receive payment in stages, starting June 27, 2022.

“More Malaysian families are eligible to receive assistance, including part of the middle 40% income group and not only limited to the bottom 40% income group (B40) as for the previous direct cash assistance initiative.

“Usually, BKM is known as assistance to the B40 group, but the fact is that BKM now benefits 12.6 million individuals, which is equivalent to 60% of adults in Malaysia,” he explained.

Members of the public can check the payment status through the link — TMR