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No pressure in decision to maintain OPR, says Fahmi

The communications and digital minister cites Malaysia's economic growth and declining inflation rate.

2 minute read
Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil. Photo: Bernama
Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil. Photo: Bernama

The decision to maintain the overnight policy rate (OPR) at 3.0% was made without pressure from the government or any party, says Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil.

He said it was based on several factors including the country’s good economic growth, the inflation rate which showed a declining trend, as well as almost full employment rate.

"In addition, the country is in a highly competitive state, the second best after Singapore in the Southeast Asian region.

"So when we look at Bank Negara Malaysia's (BNM) statement, these are among the factors that made the monetary policy committee (MPC) maintain the OPR," he told reporters in Seremban yesterday.

The MPC had earlier decided to keep the OPR at 3.00%, in line with the global economic development and the inflation rate in Malaysia which showed a declining trend.

The finance ministry said although the global economic outlook was affected by the risk of global growth slowing down, the government was confident that the Malaysian economy would continue to grow in 2023.

Meanwhile, Fahmi who is the government spokesman, said the ministry was always in touch with the Association of Banks in Malaysia (ABM) and the Association of Islamic Banking and Financial Institutions Malaysia (AIBIM), to be more proactive in engaging the public to explain the impact of any decision involving the OPR.

"I have asked ABM and AIBIM to provide a proper explanation if the people face problems, for example, as a result of the increase in OPR... we have just come out of the Covid-19 pandemic, and I believe the banks understand.

"During the previous moratorium period and then post-pandemic, there were still many who were affected economically and, of course, the banks are ready to help. We also welcome the banks' proactive efforts to help the people," he added.