Malaysia unveils 4.86 billion USD economic stimulus package hinh anh 1The Malaysian economy contracts 5.6 percent in 2020. (Photo: Reuters)

Kuala Lumpur  (VNA) – Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on March 17 announced a new economic stimulus package, hoping to breathe life into the pandemic-hit economy.

The economy contracted 5.6 percent in 2020, its worst performance since a 7.4 percent fall in 1998, owing partly to strict movement curbs aimed at halting the COVID-19 spread.

Muhyiddin said the government would roll out 20 billion MR (4.86 billion USD) of stimulus packages, including a 11 billion MR fiscal injection.

Under the new plan, the government will raise its COVID-19 immunisation budget to 5  billion MR, from the initial 3 billion MR laid out in its 2021 budget.

The additional funds should help Malaysia reach its target of vaccinating 80 percent of its 32 million population by December, instead of February 2022, the Prime Minister said.

In a bid to promote alternative financing, he said the securities commission would improve regulations and expand equity crowdfunding to unlisted private firms.

Listing fees would be waived for 12 months to encourage companies to go public, while listed firms that suffered quarterly losses would be eligible for rebates on their annual listing fees.

Muhyiddin said commercial 5G services would start in stages from the end of this year to develop innovation and new jobs in the digital economy.

The government will also offer more cash aid, subsidies, matching grants and training for individuals and businesses, while applying movement restrictions only in areas with infections.

This was the second round of stimulus packages announced this year after a 3.7 billion USD plan in January./.