The wait is over, as our Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng has recently tabled Malaysia’s Budget 2019. This is the largest ever federal budget allocation (RM314.5bil), compared to the previous two federal budgets. Plus, it is also the first-ever federal budget tabled by the new government (Pakatan Harapan).
#1 Fuel Subsidy
A total of RM2 billion will be allocated for the fuel subsidy to be implemented in the second quarter of 2019.
A fuel subsidy for RON 95 will be given, targeted towards cars with the engine capacity of 1,500cc and below, and motorcycles with engine capacity of 125cc and below.
Note that the subsidy will be given at 30 sen per litre for a maximum of 100 litres a month for cars; and 30 sen per litre for a maximum of 40 litres a month for motorcycles.
#2 Toll Collection
There will be no increase for the toll price on all inter-city highways in 2019. A total of RM700 million will be allocated to absorb the cost for the freezing of toll prices, as to provide the rakyat a fixed rate in toll charges.
Toll charges will be abolished effective from 1st January 2019 for motorcycles on both Penang bridges and the Second Link in Johor. With that, a total of RM20 million will be allocated.
Seeing the severity of traffic congestion on the road to Singapore, especially for the rakyat who travel there on a daily basis, a total of RM10 million will be allocated to improve the situation. One solution mentioned in Budget 2019 is to upgrade the Autogate Malaysia Automated Clearance System and M-Bikes at both the Causeway and the Second Link.
Implementation will continue for the Pan Borneo Highway encompassing Sabah and Sarawak, subject to a cost rationalization exercise.
Some have expressed that it will be a belt-tightening budget, while some have said that what the government has implemented is a good budget strategy that will allow Malaysia to stabilize and strengthen its economy.