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60 per cent of govt transactions cashless in 2020: Malaysia’s PM

This boosts Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin ahead of May 18's parliamentary sitting. PHOTO: AFP. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

KUALA LUMPUR, Jun 1, 2020, NST. Digital transactions accounted for 60 per cent of the money collected by the government in 2020, paving the way for it to achieve its goal to enable all payments for public services available virtually by 2022, New Straits Times reported.

Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said this meant that people would not have to queue in long lines anymore.

He said besides the push from the pandemic, the shift was primed as 13.4 per cent of Malaysia’s population or more than 3.9 million people, were digital natives (those aged 15 to 24 who have been actively using the internet for at least five years).

Muhyiddin said this while drawing on the International Telecommunications Union statistics during the launch of the e-Belia programme today.

The initiative that received an upgrade recently under the Pemerkasa financial aid package would enable 2 million Malaysians aged 18 to 20 or fulltime students from higher learning institutions to receive a RM150 credit from several e-wallet service providers.

“The credit points have been increased from RM100 to RM150 for each recipient and this would be matched by e-wallet providers through incentives like vouchers, cashbacks and rewards points.”

He said the RM300 million pumped in for e-belia is also expected to boost micro, small and medium scale entrepreneurs to allow them to opt for cashless transactions.

“Please take this opportunity to support our local entrepreneurs, who are mainly youths as well. As a digital citizen I know you can spearhead cashless payment and encourage traders to use this platform,” Muhyiddin said during the virtual programme.

He said the programme was also an extension of the government’s continuous support to empower people and businesses.

“Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) reported that e-transactions increased by 131 per cent in 2020 to 600 million transactions. More traders have registered to receive QR codes with the number of registrations more than doubling at the end of last year.”

He said that the government had also laid out funds for youths to participate in business with a focus on businesses that would like to roll out digital elements in their operations via avenues such as the Automation and Digitalisation Fund under BNM.

Muhyiddin further said that the public-private partnership also helped spur initiatives such as e-belia further and was committed to supporting such efforts through the Jaringan Prihatin initiative that was recently launched.

E-wallets participating are Touch n Go, ShopeePay and Boost and redemptions for the sums are from today until July 2021.

Also present was Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz and representatives from the service providers.

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