ISTANBUL, July 5 — The government will ensure that any increase in the price of basic necessities due to world supply chain disruptions caused by geopolitical conflict and climate change will not burden the people of Malaysia, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

“I do not deny that prices of goods have increased, this is a global phenomenon. Not only in Malaysia, not only in Turkey but throughout the world ... initially because of the Covid-19 pandemic and then the Ukraine-Russia war,” he said at a luncheon with Malaysians staying or studying in Turkey today.

Ismail Sabri, who arrived here today for a four-day official visit to the republic, said what differentiated Malaysia from most other countries was the rate of subsidy given by the Malaysian government, which has exceeded RM77.7 billion.

“For example, the inflation rate in Turkey has hit 78 per cent, the highest in 24 years. Malaysia is lucky because the government could maintain subsidies and ensure prices of goods do not surge and burden the people,” he added.

The prime minister said feedback received from Malaysians in this country showed that prices of basic goods had increased sharply and there were no subsidies except for bread.

“Many feel that living in Turkey has become more challenging by the day, especially for students. The prices of food increase every week or every two weeks,” he said.

In Malaysia, he said, the government continued to provide subsidies for food and goods like chicken, cooking oil, petrol and diesel.

The government also maintained the electricity and water tariffs to protect the interests of Keluarga Malaysia by providing subsidies to the tune of RM5.8 billion despite the sharp increase in the costs of fuel and other generation costs.

Apart from this, additional cash aid of up to RM500 for the B40 group and part of the M40 group was also given, he added.

A total of 8.6 million recipients are eligible for Bantuan Keluarga Malaysia aid totalling RM1.74 billion given out in stages from last June 27, and so far eight million recipients or 93 per cent have received the payments, he said. — Bernama