PETALING JAYA: The government has introduced several new initiatives worth RM10bil to help people weather the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Kita Prihatin package is an additional stimulus to previous government initiatives such as the RM35bil Pelan Jana Semula Ekonomi Negara (Penjana) announced in June and the RM260bil Prihatin package in March.
Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said while the figures showed that there was economic recovery, new initiatives were needed as many were still facing difficulties.
He said the Wage Subsidy Programme 2.0 was targeted at firms seeing a drop in revenue of up to 30% compared to last year since the recovery movement control order (MCO).
A wage subsidy of RM600 monthly will be given to a maximum of 200 employees each for three months, with applications to be open from Oct 1 until Dec 31 this year.
The Prime Minister said he received feedback that many companies were not eligible for the scheme because they had not registered with the Social Security Organisation (Socso) before April 1.
He said to ensure they were not left behind, the second scheme would be open to companies that registered with Socso before Aug 31.
“For new applications that did not receive assistance under the Wage Subsidy Scheme programme, they will be eligible for subsidies for up to six months, ” he said yesterday in a special address to announce the initiatives.
Muhyiddin also announced a Special Prihatin Grant (GKP) to help micro businesses that were facing financial difficulties because of the pandemic.
He said it would be open to business owners registered with the Companies Commission of Malaysia or with local authorities before Aug 31, with payments to be made from Nov 25.
“The reopening of this initiative is expected to benefit over 200,000 micro businesses, with an allocation of almost RM600mil, ” he said.
Another RM7bil in cash aid under Bantuan Prihatin Nasional (BPN) 2.0 would be channelled to 10.6 million recipients, said Muhyiddin.
He said RM1,000 would be given to 3.7 million families in the B40 category, RM500 to 3.8 million single folk in the B40 group, RM600 to 1.4 million M40 families, and RM300 to 1.7 million singles in the M40 group.
The payments will be made in two batches – at the end of October this year and in January next year.
“There will be no need to apply for BPN 2.0. The government will channel aid directly
to the 10.6 million recipients who were approved previously.
“To those who are eligible but never received BPN, the government will give them a chance to appeal and submit new applications.
“I hope that with this additional assistance, you can breathe a sigh of relief in covering the daily expenses for you and your family, ” he said.
Muhyiddin also appealed to the public to reject the actions of several politicians whom he claimed wanted to undermine the political stability and the nation’s ongoing economic recovery plan.
He said the country needed a stable and strong government with the support of the public.
“This is important so that more initiatives to restore the economy and help the people can be implemented effectively by the government, ” he said.
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