Yesterday, Malaysia’s Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced RM150 billion in economic aid with a fiscal injection of RM10 billion following the extension of the first phase of the National Recovery Plan, where the full movement control order (MCO) remains indefinitely until daily cases drop below 4,000, ICU capacity in hospitals are eased and 10 percent of the population has been vaccinated.
The Pemulih aid package outlines several measures targeted at tiding people and businesses over the first phase of the National Recovery Plan, where only businesses providing essential goods and services are allowed to operate. Focusing on three key areas, the aid package will be implemented to continue with the people-caring agenda, support businesses and accelerate vaccination efforts.
The package is a continuation of seven financial assistance and economic stimulus packages that were implemented since the COVID-19 pandemic began early last year and amount to RM380 billion combined.
Highlights of the Pemulih aid package which are relevant for MIA members are as follows:
Special Grants or Geran Khas Prihatin (GKP) for Micro Businesses
The GKP for micro-businesses will be further expanded under the Pemulih package and additional one-off payments will be given to eligible recipients with RM500 to be paid inSeptember and another RM500 in November. This aid comes on top of the GKP 3.0 payout of RM1,000 which was distributed earlier this month and RM500 in mid-July. To date, an overall RM5.1billion has been allocated for GKP.
Salary Subsidy Programme Limit Removed
The cap on the salary subsidy programme to employees who earn below RM4,000 is removed. Employers can now apply for the scheme even if their employees earn more than RM4,000 a month.
Payment Exemption for HRD Levy
The Government will automatically exempt payments for the HRD levy for two months for employers who are unable to operate during phase one of the National Recovery Plan.
Syarikat Jaminan Pembiayaan Perniagaan Bhd (SJPP) Increases Its Guarantee Ceiling
The Syarikat Jaminan Pembiayaan Perniagaan Bhd (SJPP) has agreed to increase its guarantee ceiling by RM20 billion to ensure the SME sector remains relevant and competitive.
Additional Funds from Bank Negara Malaysia for SMEs
An additional RM2 billion from Bank Negara Malaysia will be given for the purpose of supporting and aiding SMEs and micro entrepreneurs, increasing available funds for new applicants to RM8.6 billion.
Microcredit Scheme Expansion
The expansion of the microcredit scheme, with Agrobank and Bank Simpanan Nasional pumping in RM500 billion each and the Tekun scheme preparing RM100 million. The cumulative amount of the microcredit funds now available this year for micro entrepreneurs is RM3 billion.
Small Entrepreneur Digital Empowerment Programme (Pupuk)
Under the newly-introduced Small Entrepreneur Digital Empowerment Programme (PUPUK), the Government will be allocating RM200 million to assist micro SMEs and RM100 million for SMEs.
These allocations will go towards the Shop Malaysia Online and Go-eCommerce On boarding initiatives; the SME Digitalisation Grant for SMEs to acquire matching grants of up to RM5,000; to encourage strategic partnerships between social media providers, telecommunication companies and community internet centres to help rural entrepreneurs go digital; and to the Agriculture Sector Digitalisation and Transformation Programme.
The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) will introduce a new withdrawal facility, the i-Citra. Under this withdrawal scheme, 12.6 million EPF members can make withdrawals of up to RM5,000, with a fixed payment rate of RM1,000 per month for five months.
Automatic Moratorium for All Borrowers
An automatic, blanket moratorium will be given on loan repayments for individual borrowers in the B40, M40 and T20 groups. Borrowers will need to apply for this moratorium, where banks will give automatic approval and applications will begin on 7 July 2021.
RM150 Million Allocation for Public-Private Partnership Immunisation Programme (PIKAS)
The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) is coordinating with the Public-Private Partnership COVID-19 Industry Immunisation Programme (PIKAS) to incentivise companies and industries to use their premises as vaccination centres (PPVs) and conduct immunisation programmes for employees, where the Government will supply the vaccines while the company makes logistical arrangements at their premises. The RM150 million will be allocated for the implementation of PIKAS and to alleviate companies’ costs.
Employers registered under the Human Resources Development Corporation (HRD Corp), can use up to 10 percent of their remaining current levy for the cost of management and purchase of COVID-19 vaccines.
1 Gigabyte of Daily Free Data
Telecommunications companies have agreed to extend the 1GB of daily free data until the end of the year. This initiative estimated to be worth RM500 million will benefit 44 million registered users in the country.
Please click HERE for the full speech.
The Institute hopes that the Pemulih aid package will provide reprieve for our members, and that the grants and subsidies aimed at reducing costs borne by employers, encouraging digitalisation efforts and providing financial support and tax incentives will benefit member firms throughout the National Recovery Plan.
MIA will continue to closely monitor the situation, maintain close communication with the Government, regulators and our stakeholders, and will notify members of any future developments. In the interim, MIA hopes that everyone will comply with the lockdown SOPs and all rules and regulations for our mutual benefit.
We thank you for your understanding and patience and we hope that everyone will stay safe.
#STAYSAFE #ACCOUNTABILITY #INTEGRITY
DR. NURMAZILAH DATO’ MAHZAN
Chief Executive Officer