Youth and Sports Ministry announces seven initiatives to help sports industry players

PETALING JAYA: The Youth and Sports Ministry have announced seven incentives to ease the burden of sports industry players affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The ministry said these incentives add value to the stimulus packages unveiled by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin under the National People's Well-Being and Economic Recovery Package (Pemulih) and Strategic Programme to Empower The People and Economy (Pemerkasa).

"The ministry understands the plight of sports industry players who are badly hit by the closure of the sports and recreational sector because of the ongoing movement control order," the ministry said in a statement on Monday (July 5).

"Many are facing many challenges, among them growing debt, dismissal of employees and some were forced to close, especially gymnasiums and fitness centres."

The seven initiatives are:

First initiative: Sports industry Prihatin grant (GPIS)

Under the GPIS initiative, the ministry will hand out a RM3,000 one-off relief grant to eligible sports and recreational facility operators, subject to conditions.

Second initiative: Loan moratorium for sports industry players (SPIKE)

All sports industry players are considered as part of the affected group and thus eligible for a loan moratorium. Through SPIKE, the ministry will assist affected parties by simplifying their loan moratorium application with banks by issuing them confirmation letters.

Third initiative: Sports facilities rental incentive

This initiative features several rental exemptions for the Phase 2 of National Recovery Plan, which include:

– 50% rental exemption for those who use ministry-managed sports and recreational facilities

– 50% rental exemption for business operators at the premises of ministry-managed facilities

These exemptions are only for facilities located at the Youth and Sports Department, National Sports Council, Development and Leadership Excellence Institute and Impact Integrated.

Fourth initiative: Special MyVac quota for sports industry employees

A total of 1,000 MyVAC slots have been set aside for sports industry employees registered under the Youth and Sports Ministry or International Trade and Industry Ministry via the CIMS system.

All MyVAC@SportsIndustry volunteers will enjoy a daily allowance of RM100 if they are on duty for two sessions, approximately 12 hours a day. The ministry has allocated RM6mil for this initiative.

Fifth initiative: Sports industry financing scheme (SPIS)

The existing SPIS is set to be enhanced with both the Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives Ministry as well as the Youth and Sports Ministry to work hand in hand to bring the matter to the Cabinet's attention in a bid to further reduce the financing interest rate for sports industry players.

Sixth initiative: Sports industry vaccination programme (Sportivac)

Sportivac enables sports industry players to be given priority for vaccination under the coordination of SPIKE.

Seventh ‌initiative: Free sports-related courses

This initiative opens up opportunities to all those seeking to upskill and empower themselves with sports-related courses and will be conducted free of charge by ministry agencies. The five courses offered are the coaching foundation programme, communication towards professionalism in sports, golf services bootcamp, sports massage and other short-term courses.

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