E-wallet services urge users to claim their RM30 eTunai before March 9

More locations including markets are going cashless as the public is being encouraged to adopt e-wallets through the eTunai Rakyat scheme. — AZHAR MAHFOF/The Star

With just a week left to claim and spend the RM30 eTunai Rakyat handout, e-wallet services are reminding users to grab their cash quickly as applications still take at least a day to process.

Eligible Malaysians are entitled to redeem the money through an e-wallet service of their choice, with RM450mil set aside to be distributed via the three approved services: Touch ‘n Go eWallet, Boost and GrabPay.

Once users choose an e-wallet and verify their ID with it, their eligibility will be checked by both the National Registration Department (NRD) and Inland Revenue Board (IRB), a process which could take up to five days.

TNG Digital Sdn Bhd CEO Ignatius Ong assures that it currently takes about one working day for eligible Touch ‘n Go eWallet users to successfully claim their money.

Though he could not reveal how many users had claimed via Touch ‘n Go eWallet, he said the service experienced a 10-fold growth rate in app users during the period.

The e-wallet currently has more than 10 million registered users.

A Boost spokesperson also confirmed that there have been some approvals done within 15 minutes, while most take a day.

They reminded users to claim earlier to be safe, as any eTunai money not spent by March 14 would be forfeited back to the government.

GrabPay managing director Ooi Huey Tyng also confirmed that approval is almost immediate, and added that users could reach out to the company if they do not receive any update, or the RM30, within 24 hours.

She said that of the total successful claimants on GrabPay so far, 30% were previously heavy cash users.

Ooi added that the initiative had resulted in a shift in users going cashless: some 80% of users have spent some of their RM30. Of those, half had already spent the full amount and have since been topping up their e-wallet in RM30 increments.

To qualify for the e-Tunai Rakyat initiative, users are required to submit their IC number, name as per IC, and even take a selfie with their IC to the e-wallet service of their choice.

Malaysians above 18 years of age who earn less than RM100,000 annually are eligible to receive the RM30, which is meant to encourage users to adopt cashless payments.

The initiative will run until March 14. Any remaining balance of the RM30 not spent by then will be removed from the user’s e-wallet.

The Finance Ministry stated that as of Feb 8, over six million Malaysians had applied and spent RM18mil through the participating e-wallets.

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