The amount spent by the government for such programmes have dropped by about RM20bil between 2012 and 2020.
Of great help: Social security institutions, such as Socso and the Employees Provident Fund, have demonstrated great agility and speed in providing relief during the current crisis.PETALING JAYA: Malaysia has over one hundred social assistance programmes that have increased in number over the past decade, yet the amount spent by the government for such programmes have dropped by about RM20bil between 2012 and 2020.
This was revealed by Khazanah Research Institute (KRI), which said many deserving Malaysians have fallen through the cracks due to the gaps in the national social protection system.In its latest report on “Building Resilience: Towards Inclusive Social Protection in Malaysia”, KRI called for urgent and gradual reforms to be undertaken.
The research outfit said Malaysia’s most social assistance programmes, such as cash transfers, continue to be short-term buffers, lacking legal and sustainable financial commitments.This has resulted in unsustainable programmes, of which many are small and fragmented, often with irregular and inadequate benefits. headtopics.com
The report showed that the number of federal social assistance and subsidy programmes have increased to 137 by 2020 from 95 in 2012, not accounting the various new ad-hoc schemes to combat Covid-19 effects.While such programmes have proliferated, the total spending has dropped from RM45.5bil in 2012 to RM25.5bil in 2020, despite the ever-growing national budget size.
Speaking at the report launch yesterday, KRI chairman Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop (below) said it is an opportune time for the current social protection model to be reconfigured in preparing for a more volatile and challenging future, due to emerging trends such as rapid population aging and weak labour markets.
Nor Mohamed Yakcop KRI chairman“These challenges, if not addressed, will limit the nation’s ability to ensure the welfare of Malaysians in the future.“Social security institutions, such as Socso and the Employees Provident Fund, have demonstrated great agility and speed in providing relief during the current crisis.
“However, the coverage of these schemes, which are contributory in nature, are limited to only employees in formal employment,” he said.KRI recommends Malaysia to move from the charity-model of poverty targeting to a more inclusive life cycle approach that is forward looking in preventing poverty and addressing vulnerability. headtopics.com
“In this model, policies are designed to provide a social protection floor throughout one’s life span.“Previous study by KRI showed that social protection policies will matter to at least 70% of households, as they are vulnerable to fall into poverty due to unexpected shocks and many face trade-offs in their consumption,” it said.
In the latest report launched yesterday, KRI highlighted five key policy recommendations to build an improved social protection system. The recommendations are:> Investing in a universal child benefit scheme;> Expanding social security to all working-age individuals;
> Establishing social insurance pension for old age;> Introduction of financing and progressive realisation strategy; and> Building a national social security institution and a unified registry. Read more: The Star »
Innovation Awards 2021
US Fed may hint at ending stimulus, but no big moves expected | Malay MailWASHINGTON, Sept 22 — Will they or won’t they? Markets worldwide will be holding their collective breaths today as they await the Federal Reserve’s decision on whether it will begin to close the taps on its monetary stimulus. The growing consensus is that the much-anticipated first step will...
UK eyes small steps with US on trade as big deal prospects fade | Malay MailLONDON, Sept 22 — Britain wants to make incremental steps on trade with the United States and still believes a bigger free trade deal can be done, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said today, despite little public encouragement from US President Joe Biden. Johnson’s government once touted a trade...
Philippines lower house approves VAT for big tech firmsMANILA (Reuters) - The Philippines' lower house of Congress has approved a bill imposing taxes on tech giants like Facebook, Alphabet's Google and Youtube, and Netflix.
US and EU look to work more closely in regulating Big Tech at summit | Malay MailWASHINGTON, Sept 23 — The United States and European Union plan to take a more unified approach to limit the growing market power of Big Tech companies, according to a draft memo seen by Reuters. The move will be among announcements on tech, climate, trade and supply chains likely to be made at a...
KRI moots establishment of Universal Child Benefit scheme | New Straits TimesNSTnation A UCB scheme offers families regular, unconditional cash payments until the child’s 18th birthday with the aim of ensuring children’s basic needs are taken care of throughout childhood and adolescence. Children KRI UniversalChildBenefit