Over RM2bil funds available soon to boost bumiputra entrepreneurship, says PM

KUALA LUMPUR: Over RM2bil in funds will be made available to encourage bumiputra entrepreneurship, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Prime Minister said the funds included a micro-credit scheme for small bumiputra vendors and funds channelled through government-linked companies to scale up bumiputra businesses.

The funds, which included an endowment started by successful bumiputra businessmen and professionals, were part of the unity government's agenda to boost the socio-economic status of the bumiputra community.

Anwar announced this during the closing speech of the Bumiputra Economic Congress here on Saturday (March 2).

Besides these funds, Anwar announced other initiatives to increase the community's socio-economic status.

A Waqaf Madani endowment fund that aimed to collect RM1bil from successful bumiputra professionals and entrepreneurs within 10 years would be established to aid bumiputra entrepreneurs and students, and provide welfare and healthcare assistance.

"Contributors to the endowment will receive income tax reliefs while the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong has agreed to be the fund's patron," Anwar said.

To help bumiputra youth find jobs, the administration is working with government-linked companies to train 100,000 TVET workers who would then receive jobs that offered a minimum monthly wage of RM3,500.

In order to increase the amount of Malay reserve land, 20ha from the Bandar Malaysia project in Kuala Lumpur would be set aside to build affordable homes for the community.

The Madani Affordable Housing Scheme would also be expanded to build 2,500 homes on Malay reserve land throughout different cities.

"Pelaburan Hartanah Berhad dan Permodalan Nasional Berhad will be entrusted to carry out commercial projects on Malay reserve land," Anwar said.

The Prime Minister added that starting on Saturday, all gifts and souvenirs handed out by the government and its agencies would be sourced from bumiputra enterprises from all over the country.

"A golden opportunity is when Malaysia takes over as the chair of Asean in 2025, as there will be thousands of events that will need such gifts and souvenirs."

The government would also set up the Gig Work Commission to improve social protections and contract negotiations for the 1.2 million gig workers in the country, most of whom were bumiputra.

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