RM17 bil from COVID-19 fund to be spent on wage subsidy

A total of RM17 bil from the COVID-19 Fund will be spent mainly on the Wage Subsidy Programme (WSP), small-scale infrastructure projects, small and medium enterprise (SME) soft loan and food security.

In its Fiscal Outlook and Federal Government Revenue Estimates 2021 report released today, the Finance Ministry said the COVID-19 Fund, which was established to address the impact of the pandemic to the economy, has a validity period of three years ending Dec 31, 2022.

 “This enables programmes and projects under the economic stimulus packages and recovery plan to be fully funded by proceeds from domestic borrowings,” it said.

It added that the virement of allocations between programmes and projects are allowed within the given limit of RM45 bil and in the event where new programmes or additional allocation are required, the government must amend and table the revised Schedule to COVID-19 Act to Parliament for approval.

It added that the government has taken earlier steps in fiscal injection consisting several stimulus packages such as PRIHATIN and PENJANA.

“The COVID-19 crisis has necessitated the establishment of the fund, which allows proceeds and borrowings to be transferred into the fund and utilised under the economic stimulus packages and recovery plan.

“The fund is designed for swift implementation, effective monitoring and proper reporting of the packages, which further enhance accountability and transparency of public finance management,” it said. – Nov 6, 2020

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