THE government should invest more to develop the renewable energy sector as it would add value to the economy and create new jobs, according to a local think tank.
Touching on its Budget 2021 wish list, Research for Social Advancement (Refsa) said the government should also look into incentivising local businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Despite the setback, we see this as an opportunity for the government to transform the economy and fix major flaws on our fundamentals exposed by the pandemic,” it said in a statement.
In this regard, Refsa noted the government should look into green initiatives such as promoting the development of electric vehicles and recycling sector.
“We can also look into initiatives where we can convert waste into energy,” it suggested.
According to Refsa, another investment that the government should consider was incentives to promote urban farming in an effort to become self-reliant in terms of food production.
“We should also develop our own local defence industry, in tandem with the National Defence Investment Plan,” it said.
In terms of employment, Refsa urged the government to continue with the Malaysia@Work scheme to bolster youth employment.
“The government should also expand public tertiary education by providing more learning incentives, other than boosting our public healthcare system to accommodate senior citizens and develop a caring economy,” it said.
In terms of social matters, Refsa urged the government to increase the Bantuan Sara Hidup (BSH) payout to match the minimum wage level of RM1,200.
“The government should expand Employment Insurance System (EIS) by providing incentives to new subscribers,” it added.
Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Aziz is scheduled to table the Budget 2021 on Nov 6. – Oct 21, 2020