PAKEJ BANTUAN KHAS SARAWAKKU SAYANG COVID-19

MITIGATING THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 AND PROTECT THE WELLBEING OF SARAWAKIANS

Global economy has been faced with many challenging situations over the years. Uncertainty over prolonged trade tensions between the United States and China has slowed down global economy and dampened trade performance since 2018.  The situation is now made worse by COVID-19 pandemic. 

Malaysia is not spared from this outbreak and the global economy uncertainties. National economy has experienced slowest growth of 3.6 percent in fourth quarter of 2019. This is due to slower performance in trade, disruptions of commodities supply and lower investments. This will have negative impact on Sarawak’s economy and the wellbeing of its people.

This is a State funded initiatives on top of what the federal government has announced earlier. This is GPS government’s proactive measure towards the wellbeing of Sarawakians.

PAKEJ BANTUAN KHAS SARAWAKKU SAYANG focuses on mitigating the impact of COVID-19 and protect the wellbeing of Sarawakians through 16 proactive measures, these measures are targeted at frontline personnel, households and business communities who at this time needed supports the most:

MEASURE 1: ELECTRICITY BILL DISCOUNT

Domestic, Commercial and Industrial consumers will be given discount of 5% to 25% on their monthly electricity bill for April until September 2020. The discounts will benefit 686,847 users throughout Sarawak. The average cost for monthly electricity bill discount is RM27.8 million and the cumulative cost of discounts amounts to RM166.8 million. This special one-off discount of the electric bill will be borne by the Sarawak Government.

TABLE 1:

ELECTRICITY BILL DISCOUNTS

MEASURE 2: WATER BILL DISCOUNT

Domestic, Commercial and Industrial consumers will be given discount of 10% to 25% on their monthly water bill for April until September 2020. This special one-off discounts will benefit 568,247 consumers throughout the State.

The average cost for monthly water bill discount would be around RM4.2 million and the cumulative cost of discounts are RM25.26 million. The special one-off discount of the water bill will be borne by the Sarawak Government.

TABLE 2:

WATER BILL DISCOUNTS

MEASURE 3: BANTUAN KHAS SARAWAKKU SAYANG

430,000 Sarawakian from the low income category, the B40 group will be provided a monthly cash pay-out of RM250 for 6-months. This measure will cost Sarawak Government RM 645 million.

MEASURE 4: SPECIAL MONTHLY INCENTIVES FOR FRONTLINE PERSONNEL INVOLVED IN COVID-19

Sarawak Government would like to honour the personal sacrifice and commitment of the front-liners who are directly exposed to coronavirus risk while performing their duty in managing the outbreak in Sarawak. Sarawak Government will provide special monthly incentives for 6-months:

RM300 to 6,232 Medical doctors, nurses and medical personnel who are working tirelessly in hospitals and clinics throughout Sarawak.

RM200 to 535 Immigration officers manning the entry points throughout Sarawak.

RM200 to 3,395 PDRM and Bilik Gerakan Negeri officers working around the clock to ensure safety and security of Sarawakians.

RM200 to 590 Malaysian Arm Forces (ATM) who are manning the borders and those helping the police in maintaining law and order.

RM200 to 590 RELA Personnel who are working around the clock to ensure safety and security of neighbourhoods

This measure will cost Sarawak Government RM17.35 million.

TABLE 3:

SPECIAL MONTHLY INCENTIVES FOR THE FRONT-LINERS TO COMBAT COVID-19

MEASURE 5: DISCOUNT FOR RENTAL OF MARKET AND STALLS

A discount of 50% for rental of market and stalls covering a period of six (6) months up to September 2020. This assistance is expected to benefit more than 10,000 hawkers renting the market and stalls particularly under the purview of the Local Councils.

MEASURE 6: WAIVER OF PERMITS AND LICENSES FEES

Sarawak Government will provide waiver of permits and licenses fees to traders, hawkers, night market traders, Tamu and bazaar Ramadhan operations. The waiver will benefit over 2 million permits and licensed holders in the various local authorities throughout Sarawak. This will ease the burden of the rakyat that will cost Sarawak Government RM8.24 million for the year 2020.

MEASURE 7: 25% DISCOUNT ON ASSESSMENT RATE

A discount of 25% on annual assessment rate above RM400 threshold will be given to residential, commercial, industrial and special purpose holdings for the year 2020. This measure will benefit more than 185,000 premises. This will ease the burden of the rakyat and business owners and cost Sarawak government RM74.58 million in 2020.

MEASURE 8: DEFERMENT OF LOAN REPAYMENT FOR SKIM PINJAMAN INDUSTRI KECIL DAN SEDERHANA (SPIKS)

As a measure to ease the SMEs cash flow and lessen their financial burden, Sarawak Government has decided to defer the loan repayment for 9 months effective from April 2020. This will benefit 144 outstanding borrowers of Skim Pinjaman Industri Kecil dan Sederhana (SPIKS). This will improve cash flow of SMEs amounting to RM1.3 million.

MEASURE 9: ADDITIONAL RM20 MILLION MICRO-CREDIT SCHEMES FOR ALL SMEs

On top of existing RM30.0 million micro-credit funds, Sarawak Government will offer additional RM20.0 million for SMEs to expand their business and to sustain their businesses.

MEASURE 10: 30% DISCOUNT FOR LAND RENT

30% discounts for payments of land rents to all land uses for the year 2020. These measures will benefit 52,403 commercials, industrial, residential, large scale plantations and other public facilities. This will ease the burden of the rakyat and will cost Sarawak government RM11.84 million.

TABLE 4:

30% DISCOUNT FOR PAYMENTS OF LAND RENT BY LAND USE CATEGORIES TO BENEFIT 52,403 STAKEHOLDERS

MEASURE 11: DEFERMENT OF LAND PREMIUMS

One-off Deferment payment for land premium for the year 2020 will benefit 1,721 stakeholders across Sarawak, which includes Agriculture, residential, commercial and industrial units as well as private and public institutions.

TABLE 5:

DEFERMENT OF LAND PREMIUM BY LAND USE CATEGORY FOR YEAR 2020 TO BENEFIT 1,721 STAKEHOLDERS ACROSS SARAWAK

MEASURE 12: WAIVER OF HOTEL LICENSE FEES FOR LICENSED HOTELS AND LODGING HOUSES

A one-off waiver for Hotel licensing fees for 17,289 Hotel Rooms throughout Sarawak for the year 2020. The incentive will benefit over 340 Hoteliers and lodging houses. This will cost Sarawak Government RM386,630.

MEASURE 13: FREE FACE MASK

Sarawak Government have placed an order of 2 million pieces face masks to be distributed free to Sarawakians through the State Disaster Management Committee.

MEASURE 14: URGENT HOSPITAL NEEDS AND PERSONAL PROTECTION EQUIPMENTS (PPE)

Providing dedicated supports to physicians and practices on the front lines of testing, diagnosing, and treating patients at risk of COVID-19. Costs include acquiring personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies. This will cost Sarawak Government RM10 Million.

MEASURE 15: FOODS FOR ALL FRONT-LINERS DURING MCO

Providing dedicated supports of food supplies to physicians and practices on the front lines of testing, diagnosing, and treating patients at risk of COVID-19. Costs include purchase of food supplies. This will cost Sarawak Government RM1 Million.

MEASURE 16: HDC RENTAL DISCOUNT OF 50% FOR 6-MONTHS

A discount of 50% for rental of HDC Houses rental scheme covering a period of six (6) months up to September 2020. This assistance is expected to benefit more than 3,200 customers renting HDC houses throughout Sarawak.

FINANCIAL IMPLICATION

Pakej Bantuan Khas Sarawakku Sayang involves a total of RM 1,154.54 million injection to our economy.  This involves direct expenditure by the Sarawak Government of RM974.75 million to mitigate the impact of economic slowdown and reduce the burden of Sarawakians. This is further supplemented by deferment of loan repayment, waiver of payments and discount of Sarawak Government basic services of RM179.79 million for the year 2020.

CONCLUSION

Pakej Bantuan Khas Sarawakku Sayang is a balanced people and business centric model to cushion the impact of economic slowdown due to COVID-19 pandemic.  At the same time, this is over and above of our continuous efforts to steer Sarawak economy towards a developed state by 2030. The GPS Government share the pain of rakyat during this trying time.  We do not know when this pandemic will end but let us go through this together for Sarawak. Let us pray for the betterment of Sarawak. I would like to take this opportunity to plea to our people to stay at home and abide by the Movement Control Order.

Sarawak GPS Government is a caring government and we are here to be with the people especially the ones hardest hit by the pandemic, especially our traders, hawkers, night market traders and vendors, Tamu and bazaar Ramadhan operators.