Role for Budget 2021 to restore socio-economic level in post-Covid-19 Sabah, says state minister

Commercial buildings stand in the central business district of Kota Kinabalu, Sabah September 23, 2020. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
Commercial buildings stand in the central business district of Kota Kinabalu, Sabah September 23, 2020. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KOTA KINABALU, Nov 8 — Budget 2021 which was tabled on Friday is poised to play an important role in rehabilitating and strengthening the people’s socio-economic level in Sabah in post-Covid-19 pandemic next year.

State Community Development and People’s Well-being Minister, Shahelmey Yahya said it could be seen as the budget focused on vulnerable groups to assist them face the challenges brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said through the budget, the economy of the state and country would be more effectively developed to raise the socio-economic position of the people.

“Various allocations for traders, youths and women such as Additional Prihatin Grants for traders, drivers of taxi, cab and e-hailing as well as tour guides in Sabah would be helpful,” he told Bernama.

On Friday, Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz tabled Budget 2021 in Dewan Rakyat with the theme ‘Resilient as One, Together We Triumph involving allocations amounting to RM322.5 billion.

Meanwhile, State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Jafry Ariffin said Sabahans involved in tourism were among the hardest hit in the Covid-19 pandemic as there were no arrival of domestic or foreign tourists to the state.

“Before this, stalls were busy with tourists, now they are merely part of the decoration at tourist destinations and therefore the Additional Prihatin Special Grant would bring some relief to them,” he said.

He said with an allocation of RM50 million to maintain and restore tourism facilities nationwide, tourism infrastructure such as the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sepilok and Turtle Island park in Sandakan would be improved to attract more tourists. — Bernama

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