THE Defence Ministry (MINDEF) is expecting a leaner budget for 2023 for all three of its main service branches as the country deals with economic challenges while facing reduced revenue from lower crude oil prices.
According to Defence Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, MINDEF officials have sent a recalibrated budget to the Finance Ministry for vetting and expressed hope that all items on their proposed wishlist will be approved.
“The unity government has conducted a budget recalibration after taking into account lower revenue from the sale of crude oil, which has dropped from US$110 (RM470.08) per barrel to US$80. So from there, the budget will be allocated to the respective ministries based on priorities.
“For MINDEF, we have conducted our own budget recalibration and even asked for increased allocation in certain areas, so we hope that the government will consider our request,” The Vibes reported him as saying at a site visit to the Residensi Sateria armed forces housing project today.
Under the previous administration of former prime minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, the 2023 budget for MINDEF was RM17.4 bil.
To prevent further leakages in public funds, MINDEF recently declared in a press statement that they were cancelling five procurement projects including supplies, services, and infrastructure.
Instead, in accordance with the government’s policy on transparency and value for money, procurement will be handled through open tender for all three of its service branches—the army, navy, and air force.
Mohamad Hasan also reassured service members that the ministry will keep working to improve the welfare of armed forces personnel as stated in the defence white paper. This includes providing proper housing and infrastructure for servicemen. — Jan 25, 2023