On Friday (29 October), the Finance Minister, Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz had presented the Budget 2022, which is the second federal budget by the Perikatan Nasional government since it came to power.
The theme for the current year’s budget is ‘Keluarga Malaysia, Makmur Sejahtera’ or ‘Malaysian family, prosperous and peaceful’.
It was built based on 3 core concepts, which they are the people’s wellbeing, resilient businesses, and a prosperous economy.
Nonetheless, the Budget 2022 is the largest budget in the Malaysian history, with a total value of RM332.1 billion.
Here’s the highlights of Budget 2022 and how they affect you:
1. Introduction of Bantuan Keluarga Malaysia (BKM)
The finance minister said that RM8.2 billion will be allocated for the new BKM incentive, which is estimated to benefit 9.6 million people.
This initiative is similar to the previous Bantuan Prihatin Rakyat (BPR) programme introduced by the government in 2021, but under this BKM initiative, households with a monthly income of less than RM2,500 and have 3 children or more will receive RM2,000.
Meanwhile, single-parent households with a monthly income of up to RM5,000 will receive an extra RM500, and senior citizen households will receive an extra RM300.
2. RM150 handout will be given to students
The government has allocated RM450 million under this incentive and it is estimated to benefit 3 million students nationwide.
Previously, the handout were only limited for Year 1 to Form 5 students in households with an income of less than RM3,000 was capped at RM100 per person.
3. B40 students to receive free tablets under PerantiSiswa Keluarga Malaysia
The Finance Minister has introduced a new programme called ‘PerantiSiswa Keluarga Malaysia’.
The ministry has allocated RM450 million this programme, while it will also be supported by donations from telecommunication companies valued at around RM65 million.
It is expected that around 600,000 students from B40 families will benefit from this initiative.
4. Free sanitary kits for teenage girls in the B40 community
Zafrul said the government takes the issue of period poverty seriously.
“The health and personal hygiene aspect of adolescent girls is very important in reducing any health risks and dropping out of school.” he said.
The initiative will be supported by the Ministry of Women, Family, and Community Development (KPWKM) and it is estimated a total of 130,000 young women will benefit from the new initiative.
5. The government will subsidise baby car seat purchases for B40 families
The government has allocated RM30 million to help 188,000 families from the B40 group.
Their purchase will be subsidised by 50% or up to RM150.
6. Youths and full-time students will receive RM150 e-wallet credit
The government had introduced the eStart programme to foster a culture of cashless transactions in the country. RM300 million has been allocated for the initiative.
Youths aged 18 to 20 years old and full-time students in higher education institutions will be eligible for RM150 e-wallet credit and it is estimated that more than 2 million youths will be eligible for it.
7. Road tax will be exempted for people with disabilities
Starting year 2022, the government has agreed to exempt the cost of Motor Vehicle Licences (LKM) of all private vehicles owned by people with disabilities.
Zafrul said that this initiative will reduce the cost of living for people with disabilities to certain extent.
8. The minimum Employees Provident Fund (EPF) contribution rate of 9% will be extended
The government has agreed that the minimum EPF contribution rate of 9% will be extended until June 2022 and Zafrul said this initiative will put more money into people’s hand.
“The government understands the financial constraints faced by the people as a result of the prolonged Movement Control Order (MCO), especially in terms of cash flow management.” he added.
9. MyRail5 monthly public transport pass for students to continue
This monthly pass which cost RM5 a month was introduced in 2021, and it allows the user to utilised the Klang Valley commuter lines, northern sector commuters, Kuala Lipis and Tumpat intercity train, and the Beaufort-Tenom line in Sabah.
The government has allocated RM115 for this initiative so students from standard 1 to form 6 will be able to continue enjoy the KTMB’s MyRail5 pass.
10. A sales tax will be imposed on low-value items from overseas that are sold by online sellers and sent via air courier to Malaysians
In addition, service tax will also be imposed on item delivery services including e-trade.
However, food and beverages and logistic services are excluded.
11. Civil servants get special financial assistance of RM700
Zafrul said the government hoped this assistance can be a catalyst for civil servants to continue to serve with full dedication.
However, this financial assistance will only be granted to civil servants Grade 56 and below.
Besides, around 1 million pensioners will be given a one-off monetary aid of RM350.
12. Community Feeding Programme extended to help children from urban poor families
The Community Feeding Program in Selangor, Johor, Penang, Kuala Lumpur, and Putrajaya will be expanded to recipients of the malnutrition rehabilitation programme and it will benefit over 1,100 children.
The initiative aims to provide supplementary food up to 5 times a week to 100 children aged 1 to 6 year-old.
In addition, a breast milk bank will also be set up for premature babies in the Neonatal Care Unit involving hospitals in Penang, Johor, Terengganu, Sabah, and Sarawak.