Thursday, July 29, 2021

6-month loan moratorium, food allocations to all MPs as PM announces multi-billion lockdown aid

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin also announces discounts on electricity bills and special Covid-19 assistance for millions.

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Putrajaya today announced its latest series of assistance, financial and otherwise, to help millions of Malaysians weather the ongoing lockdown, from automatic moratoriums on bank and study loans and discounts on electricity bills, to cash and food aid to be allocated through MPs from both sides of the divide.

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said in a live address that a six-month moratorium on bank loans would be granted to borrowers from all income levels from July onwards as part of Pemulih, the government’s RM150 billion financial aid package to cushion the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said the moratorium would be granted to B40, M40 and T20 borrowers as well as micro-entrepreneurs.

“There are no conditions such as a loss of income, no checks on whether you have lost your job, and no documentation needed for applications.

“You only have to apply, with automatic approval given,” he said.

He also announced allocations of RM300,000 for each MP including those from the opposition for the distribution of food baskets in their constituencies, as well as RM10 million specifically for the Orang Asli community.

Other provisions under Pemulih include:

  •  RM345 million for electricity discounts of between 4% and 40% for usage not exceeding 900kW a month for three months beginning July;
  • RM30 billion worth of funds to be withdrawn by 12.6 million EPF contributors under a new initiative called i-Citra from July 15 onwards, limited to RM1,000 a month for five months;
  • The easing of education costs totalling RM400 million through a targeted moratorium on study loan (PTPTN) repayments, deferral of repayments for up to six months for JPA scholars, and deferral or restructuring of repayments for Mara study loans;
  • RM4.6 billion for Covid-19 Special Assistance (BKC) involving 11 million households, individuals and senior citizens;
  • RM500 million for loss of income aid worth RM500 each for one million EPF and Perkeso contributors;
  • Retail price of RON95, diesel and LPG to be maintained;
  • Ceiling price of RM30 per 5kg bottle of cooking oil;
  • RM15 million for NGOs to help the government address social issues such as mental health and homelessness;
  • 1GB free daily data to benefit 44 million users;
  • RM125 million through HRD Corp for ‘place and train’ initiative under Janapreneur programme;
  • Additional payouts under special Prihatin Grant 4.0 to eligible micro SMEs;
  • RM3.8 billion for Wage Subsidy Programme 4.0 to help employers retain workers;
  • RM170 million channelled through Socso’s PenjanaKerjaya to benefit 10,600 employers and 75,800 employees;
  • Small Entrepreneur Digitalisation Programme (Pupuk) with RM200 million for micro-SMEs and RM100 million for SMES;
  • RM100 million for more than 8,000 practitioners in creative arts industry;
  • RM1,000 financial aid for all registered school canteen operators;
  • Disabled Workers Allowance of RM500 per person for three months, involving RM30 million for 20,000 people with disabilities.

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