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THE projected consumption subsidy expenditure of RM77.3 billion so far this year is the highest in history ever borne by any government, the Finance Ministry (MOF) said.
Minister Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz said the projected consumption subsidies covered petrol, diesel, liquefied petroleum gas (RM37.3 billion), cooking oil (RM4 billion), flour and electricity to reduce the people’s burden, and subsidy bills (RM9.7 billion), excluding welfare assistance from 2018 to 2022.
“When added to other assistance such as social welfare assistance, including Bantuan Keluarga Malaysia (BKM) (RM11.7 billion), and other subsidies (RM14.6 billion), the total so far for this year is RM77.3 billion,” he said in a statement today.
He said this also takes into account a recent announcement by the government on additional cash assistance of RM630 million, which increased the amount of BKM Phase 2 for the low-income group to RM1.74 billion from Monday.
Also taken into account is the electricity subsidy announced yesterday worth RM5.8 billion for the second half of the year to ensure no increase in electricity tariff from July 1.
Tengku Zafrul said the government is sensitive to rising commodity prices and inflation rates due to disruptions to the global supply chain and the Ukraine-Russia conflict, which had caused basic commodity prices to surge in most countries, including in Malaysia.
In this regard, the government subsidy is intended to cover the people’s cost of living, he said.
The blanket subsidies, which cover petrol, diesel, water and electricity, also provide great benefits to the M40 and T20 groups.
“The MOF will continue to monitor external factors that can have a negative impact on the domestic economic situation to ensure the people are not financially burdened,” he added. – Bernama, June 25, 2022.