KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak tabled Budget 2016 in the Dewan Rakyat on Friday.
Najib, who is also Finance Minister, said the theme of the 2016 Budget is “Prospering the Rakyat”.
The following are the highlights of his speech:
* RM267.2bil has been allocated under Budget 2016, compared with the revised RM260.7bil in 2015.
* There will be nine high-impact domestic projects worth RM6.7bil in total.
* The first priority of Budget 2016 is to spur domestic investment to contribute 26.7% to the GDP in 2016.
* The Budget aims to increase private investment to RM218.6bil and public investment to RM112.2mil.
* The GST sum is to be credited into value of prepaid reloads from Jan 1 next year.
* Personal income tax pushed to 26% from 25% for those earning between RM600,000 to RM1mil. Income tax is also pushed up to 28pc from 25% for those earning RM1mil and above.
* RM900mil is proposed for the Jalan Tun Razak Traffic Dispersal Project to reduce congestion in the city.
* RM200mil will be allocated to improve roads in Felda settlements.
* RM1.2bil is allocated to improve Internet speeds, from 5mbps to 20mbps.
* RM1.4bil will be spent to improve 700km of road all around the country.
* RM67mil is allocated for bus operation routes outside the city.
* Tourism is expected to contribute RM103bil to the economy. E-Visa for seven countries (China, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, United States and Canada) to be launched in mid-2016.
* RM5.3bil is allocated to modernise farming.
* RM28 billion is allocated for new MRT projects.
* From Jan 2016, RM100 will be given in schooling aid to students from households with a monthly income of RM3,000 and below.
* RM250 1Malaysia book vouchers will be available for 1.2mil students.
* RM930mil is allocated to the Youth and Sports Ministry, with RM145mil set aside for training athletes.
* BR1M to continue for 4.7 million households
* The Pan-Borneo Sarawak Highway, which is set to be completed in 2021, will be toll-free.
* RM100 million is to be provided by Communications & Multimedia Ministry for eRezeki, eUsahawan programmes which is expected to benefit some 100,000 people.
* The Budget aims for 30% women involvement at decision-making levels in both public and private sectors.
* RM360mil is proposed to improve National Service, with RM160mil allocated for non-governmental organisations.
* All domestic economy class flights will be exempted from GST for rural folk.
* RM1.6bil is allocated for the construction of 175,000 units of PR1MA homes. 10,000 units are expected to be completed next year.
* TEKUN to provide RM600mil + RM500mil for Bumiputras and RM100mil for Indian entrepreneurs.
* RM90mil in micro-credit loans allocated for Chinese SME traders and businessmen, including RM50mil for KOJADI (MCA’s investment & education arm).
* RM300mil is proposed to improve the welfare and development of the Orang Asli community. RM45mil is also set aside to assist with extra food, pocket money and school transport fees for the Orang Asli community.
* The minimum starting salary in the civil service is set at RM1,200 a month from July 2016. The move is expected to benefit some 60,000 civil servants.
* From July 2016, the minimum pension rate is set at RM950 a month for pensioners with at least 25 years of service.
* A payment of RM500 for all civil servants and RM250 is allocated for Government retirees to help with cost of living.
* The Government will allocate a BR1M payout of RM400 to unmarried persons above 21 with incomes below RM2,000. A BR1M payout of RM1,050 is also set aside for those with incomes below RM1,000 and RM1,000 (for those with incomes below RM3,000), RM800 (for those with incomes below RM4,000).
* In terms of income tax, relief for each child below 18 years of age is increased to RM2,000 from RM1,000 from year of assessment 2016.
* Tax relief for individual taxpayers whose spouse has no income is increased to RM4,000 from RM3,000.
* Children supporting their parents, even if not living together with their parents, to get tax relief of RM1500 (for the mother) and RM1,500 (for the father), if the parents are above 60 years of age.
* Parents of disabled children get RM6,000 tax relief and up to RM14,000 if their child furthers his or her studies.
* Tax exemption of RM8,000 instead of RM6,000 is also set aside for every child above 18 years of age in an education institution, both local and overseas.