By Geryl Ogilvy
KUCHING, April 23: The federal government is currently looking at ways to revive the economy in stages, as the nation continues to observe the Movement Control Order (MCO).
Among the approaches would be to introduce short- and medium-term economic recovery plans to ensure the country can stimulate its economy immediately after the MCO is lifted, revealed Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
“I have instructed the Economic Planning Unit in the Prime Minister’s Department to draft a comprehensive economic recovery plan in the short-, medium-, and long-terms.
“However, the focus at this time is to identify steps and initiatives that would spur economic growth in the short- and medium-terms, while building confidence among the people and investors to stimulate the country’s economy,” he said in a special address which was broadcast across major media outlets to the nation today.
Muhyiddin announced that the MCO will be extended by another two weeks to May 12. The MCO was first enforced on March 18 and was extended twice — first to April 14 and then to April 28.
The initiatives which are currently being drafted include strengthening people’s skills and capacity building, encouraging domestic spending, enhancing the sustainability of industries including small and medium enterprises (SMEs), as well as creating a more positive investment environment for the future.
“I understand that many people are wondering when they can come back to work, back to running their businesses or operating their respective companies.
“Let me give you a hint. Even if the MCO is going to be extended after this, companies under certain sectors will be allowed to operate but subjected to complying with regulations emphasising on safety and health of workers, social distancing, and cleanliness at the workplace.”
Muhyiddin said several economic sectors have been allowed to operate and the federal government will consider opening more sectors and sub-sectors under strict regulations.
This ensures that companies will remain competitive and employees can work in a safe environment.
“Strict guidelines and detailed regulations will be provided to investors and the corporate sector to resume their operations.” — DayakDaily