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ISKANDAR PUTERI, April 15 — The government is confident of achieving the economic growth projection of between six and 7.5 per cent this year, if the current economic situation during the Covid-19 period continues to show recovery.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said the optimism was supported by several positive signs that showed the country is heading towards economic recovery.
“These include rising February exports, declining unemployment rate in February, the development of industrial indices as well as rising commodity prices, namely oil palm and world oil prices.
“With that, we are confident that Bank Negara Malaysia’s projection of between six to 7.5 per cent this year can be achieved.
“At the same time, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has also projected our country’s growth to be at 6.5 per cent this year,” said Mustapa in a media conference at Jen Hotel in Puteri Harbour here.
Mustapa also pointed out that at present there are positive signs and in another two weeks time, Bank Negara Malaysia will release the growth rate for the country’s first quarter economy.
“We are confident that such a range can be achieved, but it depends a lot on the Covid-19 situation.
“This will also mean that if the situation becomes more stable and the [number of infections] decreases, we may be able to reach 7.5 per cent,” said Mustapa.
He also added the government will face challenges in planning Budget 2022 due to the unstable Covid-19 situation and other constraints such as the country’s financial standing.
In this regard, Mustapa said, the government will refine the application of each state government, ministry and government agency so that next year’s development allocation is more focused on projects that have a bigger impact on the people.
He said that the process for the application and discussion had started on April 12 and is expected to end by this June.
“We are aware of the government’s financial constraints because some of the resources needed to be channelled to efforts to address Covid-19 pandemic and also to ensure that Malaysians receive assistance.
“Therefore, we have to be prudent in spending and ensure that the projects approved are projects that have an impact on the people,” said Mustapa.