Mah Sing Group Berhad (Mah Sing) applauds the initiatives tabled by the government in Budget 2024, which will be able to accelerate the economic growth of Malaysia. We are glad that the Government remains confident to meet its GDP forecast of 4% – 5% for 2024, as Malaysia’s domestic economy remains resilient with many indicators showing healthy trends.
The outlook of the property sector remains optimistic, with Bank Negara Malaysia’s announcement in September to maintain its overnight policy rate (OPR) at 3% and expectations that the OPR will remain unchanged this year. Stable OPR will bring confidence to the real estate market, which will then have a broader impact on the overall economy.
With a total allocation of RM393.8 billion, Budget 2024 aims to support Malaysia in achieving its Madani Economy vision, namely to restore the nation’s dignity by restructuring the economy and improving the quality of life for all Malaysians. We can see the Government’s continuous efforts to address the issue on rising cost of living, improve the Rakyat’s well-being, as well as to improve business competitiveness and value chain.
Some of the notable measures includes:
Relaxation on Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) Applications and Visa Liberalisation Plan
Mah Sing commends the government’s plan in easing the current conditions of Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) applications aimed at attracting foreign tourists and investors into Malaysia. On top of this, the new initiatives under the Visa Liberalisation Plan for easier employment procedure to attract strategic investors will give Malaysia an extra boost as the investment destination for this region. These adjustments are expected to stimulate investment in both the Malaysian financial market and the country’s property industry. We look forward to further information regarding this relaxation of the MM2H programme.
International Practice for City Redevelopments
The government’s urban rejuvenation initiatives aim to streamline and expedite the redevelopment of ageing sites and are expected to stimulate urban renewal, encouraging the redevelopment of older city buildings. This will encourage urban renewal and the redevelopment of old buildings in the city and is positive for developers who are actively looking for land for development.
Pengerang Integrated Petroleum Complex (PIPC) as a hub for development of the chemical and petrochemical sector
The government’s plan to encourage high-growth and high-value (HGHV) sectors is commendable. The proposed Pengerang Integrated Petroleum Complex (PIPC) as a hub for the development of chemical and petrochemical sector will include tax incentive packages such as special tax rate or investment tax allowance. The increased interest would benefit our biggest township Meridin East in Johor.
Syarikat Jaminan Kredit Perumahan (SJKP) guaranteed loans increased to RM10 billion
We applaud the government’s announcement of increasing the guaranteed loans under Syarikat Jaminan Kredit Perumahan Berhad (SJKP) to RM10 billion for the benefit of 40,000 required borrowers. This will make home ownership more accessible to first-time buyers and individuals without a steady income, such as gig and freelance workers, independent business owners, small traders, and entrepreneurs.
Mah Sing’s corporate responsibility strategic partner, Mah Sing Foundation (MSF) also appreciates the comprehensive initiatives tabled by the government aimed at assisting B40 communities as well as children, our future generations.
Education Related Initiatives for School Children
MSF applauds the Government’s emphasis on Education, as evident in the allocation of RM58.7 billion in the Second MADANI budget to the Ministry of Education. The allocation of RM1.9 billion dedicated to school upgrades and maintenance across the nation especially in Sabah and Sarawak aligns with MSF’s vision ‘Reinventing Hope and Creating Long-term Change in Children’s Live’. Such nurturing and properly maintained learning environments can significantly influence student performance and allow children in rural communities to access to quality education.
MSF is also grateful that the Government agrees to broaden the eligibility criteria for parental income in Federal Small Scholarship application, which is now aligned with the poverty line income threshold of RM2,589 compared to RM1,500. Furthermore, the Government’s expansion of the provision of aid through the Poor Student Trust Fund, benefitting 1 million students will provide more children from underserved communities to have access to quality and holistic education.
We applaud the government’s initiative to empower and protect the wellbeing of students with special needs by building 18 new blocks of special education classes and equip schools with special needs students with disabled-friendly facilities, which will create a more inclusive environment for students with special needs.
Healthcare Support for Community
MSF also applauds the government’s commitment of RM300 million to refurbish 400 dilapidated clinics that have wooden structure and obsolete wiring. This will provide the community, doctors and healthcare workers a safer and better environment. Furthermore, we commend the government commitment for a healthier Malaysia through the expansion of the MADANI Medical Scheme and the continuation of the mySalam scheme for another 2 years which will benefit the underserved communities by reducing the burden of healthcare treatment cost whilst improving on the wellbeing of low-income group.
Economic Empowerment for Underserved Communities
MSF praises the Government’s allocation of RM100 million to Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia (AIM) will benefit single mothers and the poor by providing small business capital. This support empowers them to improve their lives and work towards long-term poverty reduction.
The Government’s effort to continue the Rahmah Cash Contribution in 2024 with an increased allocation of RM10 billion will be positively viewed. It aims to benefit 9 million recipients and alleviate the financial burden on the B40 communities.
Additionally, the allocation of RM2.4 billion through the Welfare Department Society (JKM) will help underserved communities, including the elderly, children and disabled individuals. These initiatives highlight the government’s commitment to addressing socio-economic challenges within the B40 communities, and MSF fully supports these efforts towards building a more equitable and inclusive society.
Overall, we applaud the unity government’s determination to uplift the national economy and the people’s well-being.