Malaysia Must Redistribute Bulk Subsidies Towards Supporting B40, M40, Small Traders: Anwar

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim chaired the Livelihood Action Council Meeting (NACCOL) No. 4 for the year 2022 which was also attended by both YAB Deputy Prime Ministers, all relevant Ministers and the Chief Secretary. The meeting was also attended by the highest officials of the government and government agencies led by the Governor of Bank Negara as well as the Chief Secretaries of the ministries.

Malaysia must redistribute the bulk subsidies that also benefit the super-rich and conglomerates towards supporting the B40, M40 and small traders who are particularly affected and in need. For example, Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) has almost 10 million users but 10% of that number ie 1 million users which includes conglomerate groups enjoy more than 50% electricity subsidy. Government departments must design and develop appropriate vehicles to implement targeted subsidies taking into account the interests of consumers and industry and ensure the smooth and effective implementation of this policy.

A total of three papers were presented in today’s NACCOL Meeting which discussed issues, challenges and strategies jointly by the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Cost of Living (KPDN), the Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change and the Ministry of Plantation and Commodities. The reports are intended to obtain preliminary views from relevant stakeholders, especially industry players and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that represent consumer rights.

The government is also consistent in developing and supporting sustainable industrial development. The country’s livestock sector has long reached a sustainable level to meet local demand and is able to export. The government intends to make it easier for these industries to export their products and ensure that the livestock sector produces enough supplies for the needs of the people, and this includes guaranteeing greater and targeted assistance, especially to local entrepreneurs.

At the moment, the issue of supply is the main focus of the government because a lack of supply will have a negative impact. Thus, the government will consider examining government intervention methods at the consumer level. The NACCOL meeting discussed this at length and some measures were recommended. This matter will be presented to the Council of Ministers and the Cabinet will make a decision tomorrow.

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