KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 18 — Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the government will re-allocate existing funds to finance the newly announced additional stimulus package worth in excess of RM15 billion.
In a special announcement today, Muhyiddin said the package which is named the Malaysian Economic and Rakyat Protection Assistance Package, or Permai, will help put money in people’s pockets and ensure the survival of businesses during the movement control order (MCO) announced last week.
“To finance the Permai assistance package, the government will re-allocate existing funds based on current priorities and through more prudent spending.
“The government will also ensure that all initiatives announced are implemented expediently and effectively,” he said in his speech.
Muhyiddin said the government does not expect as severe an economic impact as seen with the first MCO implemented in the second quarter of 2020, as more economic activities are allowed to operate.
“As such, the impact of the current MCO on the economy is expected to be manageable. Growth will continue to be supported by strong exports sector and the global trade recovery.
“The economic stimulus packages, Budget 2021 and the Permai assistance package will continue to boost consumption. Furthermore, high-impact projects and initiatives with significant economic multipliers will continue to drive the economic recovery momentum,” he said.
Muhyiddin also acknowledged that some public and business quarters are concerned about the implementation of MCO and the Emergency proclamation which has been imposed from January 11 to August 1 this year.
However, he guaranteed that the Emergency is solely because of Covid-19 and will jeopardise the country’s economy.
“I would like to emphasise once again, that this declaration of Emergency is with the sole intention of curbing the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, which is currently the biggest threat to the socio-economic development of the country.
“The government will endeavour to do everything possible to ensure that the impact of these measures on the country’s economy is contained. In fact, since January 11, 2021, it is clear that our capital markets such as Bursa Malaysia and the bond market have remained stable and orderly,” he said.
Before Permai, the government unveiled several aid initiatives, namely the Economic Stimulus Package, Prihatin package, additional Prihatin Package, National Economic Recovery Plan and Kita Prihatin Package worth RM20 billion, RM230 billion, RM10 billion, RM35 billion and RM10 billion respectively to weather the impact of Covid-19.
On January 12, Muhyiddin announced that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong had agreed to proclaim an Emergency to allow the federal government to contain the Covid-19 pandemic without political distractions.
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