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Putrajaya to push ahead with long-awaited subsidy cuts in 2024 — Rafizi

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Publish date: Wed, 17 Apr 2024, 09:51 AM

(April 17): Malaysia will cut petrol subsidies this year as it seeks to narrow its fiscal deficit, according to the country’s economy minister.

The government is on track to focus its handouts on helping the needy, Rafizi Ramli said on Tuesday.

“We are sticking to it,” the minister said in an interview in the administrative capital of Putrajaya. The government needs to “manage the sequence” of subsidy cuts, with the risk of inflation picking up even before they are implemented, he added.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s government needs to undo hefty subsidies and broaden its revenue base to boost investors’ confidence in the country, with the Malaysian ringgit trading near a 26-year low. Anwar, who rose to power in late 2022, has struggled with a drop in approval rating amid concerns over rising costs.

Malaysia currently absorbs much of the price of fuel and cooking oil for its population, straining the Southeast Asian nation’s coffers. The government plans to narrow its budget deficit to 4.3% of gross domestic product this year, from 5% in 2023.

The nation plans to unwind blanket subsidies for the RON95 fuel - Malaysia’s cheapest and most commonly used gasoline - which made up the bulk of the RM81 billion it spent on handouts last year.

“In order to reach the fiscal target of 4.3%, a certain timeline has to be abided,” Rafizi said. “Otherwise the dollars and cents will be off.”

Investors have been getting impatient with the slow rollout of promised reforms. The ringgit has declined about 4% this year and was trading on Tuesday near its weakest level since the Asian financial crisis of 1998.

Despite the ringgit’s slide, Rafizi said that he is not too concerned about the currency’s performance as it has not dampened interest from foreign investors and does not hinder the government’s ambitions.

“As far as the economic ministry is concerned, we do not see ringgit fluctuations beginning to have a negative impact on our long-term restructuring,” Rafizi said.

The minister said key to this effort is to make structural changes to the economy by creating one of the world’s “top startup ecosystems” in Malaysia. The government seeks to turn Kuala Lumpur into a preferred destination for global startups to tap into funding and also serve the larger Southeast Asian market, he said.

“Malaysia should be much better as a vibrant scene for startups, for technology and digital sectors, given all our inherent advantages,” Rafizi said.

The urgency to find new growth drivers is increasing. Economic expansion last year undershot official estimates. Data due Friday will probably show Malaysia’s exports extended declines for a second month in March after a pickup in January. Exports had fallen for 10 straight months through December, the worst streak since the global financial crisis of 2008-2009.

Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the nation’s sovereign wealth fund, will front efforts to grow the digital and technology sector in Malaysia by creating a “super fund” along with other sovereign funds to invest in startups, which the government hopes will attract venture capital firms to the country.

 

https://www.theedgemarkets.com/node/708200

Discussions
Be the first to like this. Showing 33 of 33 comments

speakup

Pmx so afraid of Malay voters that he dare not voice out against akmal, u think he got gut cut subsidy?

1 month ago

KH6996

Rafizi has been barking about subsidies cut soon. When Sarawak queried a bit on PADU, PMX ran and asked Rafizi to explain. PM also dont know much about PADU? Thus if subsidies are removed as stated by Rafizi ( and not PMX), inflation will rocket and RM will weaken until PMX wants to cry. That's when U turn comes back and PMX will shift the blame to Rafizi for not conducting a thorough study??

1 month ago

5354_

Ron95 no more RM 2.05? Up min 10%? Siapa undi PH hari ini menang minyak turun?

1 month ago

speakup

if totally no subsidy, Ron95 will be somewhere around rm3.80-rm4

1 month ago

eastern_joy

Semua akan naik to the moon, Petrol Hike, Prices Hike...

1 month ago

Income

KH6996
Rafizi has been barking about subsidies cut soon. When Sarawak queried a bit on PADU, PMX ran and asked Rafizi to explain. PM also dont know much about PADU? Thus if subsidies are removed as stated by Rafizi ( and not PMX), inflation will rocket and RM will weaken until PMX wants to cry. That's when U turn comes back and PMX will shift the blame to Rafizi for not conducting a thorough study??
18 hours ago


That's a gameplan. Laffiji will be the new PH scapegoat? Pm X is unscathed,true no guts?

1 month ago

Income

Laffiji got guts..。Need to wait & see

1 month ago

Income

See the drama hari ini,Msia version..。

1 month ago

chinaman

Gold luxury tax?

1 month ago

chinaman

Why tax poor only not rich people who afford buy gold

1 month ago

chinaman

India China all got gold tax

1 month ago

Income

Tax gold bcos Rm going down to Rm 5 for 1 USD,
If no tax Gld more &more people abandon Rm,See this scene?

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

Stop dreaming. Rich ppl are in absolute control of the gomen. Guess who hold all the gold in msia- the T20 or B40? (Forget about the M40- they are struggling with debt now)

Posted by Income > 7 minutes ago | Report Abuse

Tax gold bcos Rm going down to Rm 5 for 1 USD,
If no tax Gld more &more people abandon Rm,See this scene?

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

Nevertheless, it's no brainer that increasing fuel price, inflation will make all the poor poorer and the M40 have no savings for old age; while taxing the gold will affect only the rich and affluent

1 month ago

chinaman

Ok we push ahead cut off this pakatun from next gomen...

1 month ago

DickyMe

Instead of cutting subsidy, cut the civil service employees by 70% and limit pension for politicians for one term only and revoke monopoly of transportation and other goods and services. Ada berani?

1 month ago

speakup

we have a chicken govt, a govt that is soooo fearful about losing malay votes that it is will to sacrifice it's non-malay voters and it's reformasi agenda

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

In desperate time like now, these are not issue of berani but necessity

Posted by DickyMe > 17 hours ago | Report Abuse

Instead of cutting subsidy, cut the civil service employees by 70% and limit pension for politicians for one term only and revoke monopoly of transportation and other goods and services. Ada berani?

1 month ago

Income

The real problem is whether all races are willing to work hard to uplift their communities or not. The m and the non m, must be willing to work harder. Don’t keep relying on gov handouts la. Gov is not forever the goodies provider…

1 month ago

LossAversion

Luxury cars have been "drinking" subsidised petrol for years. Should have cut these out first, or should have imposed triple road tax years ago!!!

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

This is another no brainer- yes! Even ten folds they will be willing to pay in order to show their status. And yes, they can afford

Posted by LossAversion > 17 minutes ago | Report Abuse

Luxury cars have been "drinking" subsidised petrol for years. Should have cut these out first, or should have imposed triple road tax years ago!!!

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

But can Stop dreaming. Rich ppl are in absolute control of the gomen. Guess who hold all the gold in msia- the T20 or B40? (Forget about the M40- they are struggling with debt now)

1 month ago

chinaman

Gomen has no biz in biz ...many loss making biz should privatised...billions tax payer money pump in....recently enter makan biz... Strategic assets ? Bullshit...why fight with citizens in biz?

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

This is another no brainer. Yes, obviously different personalities are cut for different fields. Gomen ppl mindset is incompactible with biz world

Posted by chinaman > 19 seconds ago | Report Abuse

Gomen has no biz in biz ...many loss making biz should privatised...billions tax payer money pump in....recently enter makan biz... Strategic assets ? Bullshit...why fight with citizens in biz?

1 month ago

chinaman

San francisco coffee gomen buy out...strategic assets? Many GLC loss makings ..many 1mdb but hidden ma

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

Check properly. It was a bail out

1 month ago

Income

Why San francisco coffee gomen bail out? San francisco coffee …Can’t fight with StarBark ker…

1 month ago

eastern_joy

At the end of day, any govt that we choose, they just do the same thing more or less, just keep increasing taxes and inflation. The govt servants, politician pays and pensions, they will not change and keep for themselves while screwing the rakyat without they knowing it - slow cooker.

1 month ago

Income

Who said they didn’t know…

Marcus Cicero (43 BC), of the Roman empire wrote this amazing wisdom.
1. The poor - work & work.
2. The rich - exploit the poor.
3. The soldier - protects both.
4. The taxpayer - pays for all three.
5. The banker - robs all four.
6. The lawyer - misleads all five.
7. The doctor - bills all six.
8. The goons - scare all of seven.
9. The Politician -, lives happily on account of all eight.

1 month ago

EngineeringProfit

For centuries, things still zahillyyah. They missed out the vizier - make full use of Creator without His permission

Posted by Income > 2 hours ago | Report Abuse

Who said they didn’t know…

Marcus Cicero (43 BC), of the Roman empire wrote this amazing wisdom.
1. The poor - work & work.
2. The rich - exploit the poor.
3. The soldier - protects both.
4. The taxpayer - pays for all three.
5. The banker - robs all four.
6. The lawyer - misleads all five.
7. The doctor - bills all six.
8. The goons - scare all of seven.
9. The Politician -, lives happily on account of all eight.

1 month ago

Income

Posted by eastern_joy > Apr 19, 2024 11:33 AM | Report Abuse

At the end of day, any govt that we choose, they just do the same thing more or less, just keep increasing taxes and inflation. The govt servants, politician pays and pensions, they will not change and keep for themselves while screwing the rakyat without they knowing it - slow cooker.



You are right. More than 2,000 years already, things are still the same… like written by…
Marcus Cicero (43 BC), of the Roman empire wrote this amazing wisdom.
1. The poor - work & work.
2. The rich - exploit the poor.
3. The soldier - protects both.
4. The taxpayer - pays for all three.
5. The banker - robs all four.
6. The lawyer - misleads all five.
7. The doctor - bills all six.
8. The goons - scare all of seven.
9. The Politician -, lives happily on account of all eight.

Nothing will change these people above. Only God can change the scenarios above. ;-@

1 month ago

Income

The problem is I am no. 1 specie that is…
1. The poor - work & work.
How? Screwed by all no. 2 to no. 9.
Omg 😨

1 month ago

Income

I am trying to be M40 and then T20 hopefully by playing Bursa biggest ha lal Casino games. U know what I mean 😢

1 month ago

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