NOVEMBER 18 — The country’s economy has shrunk due to all the crises that have occurred, especially the Covid-19 pandemic.
Following the announcement by Bank Negara Malaysia on the Overnight Policy Rate (OPR), the Malaysian economy would expand at a much lower rate in 2020 than previously forecast. This is further needed as financial stability becomes more vulnerable due to the prospect of an economic slowdown. Therefore, a more accommodative monetary policy would alleviate the negative impacts. The reduction is consistent with efforts to stabilise the economy and is supportive of national programmes such as Prihatin and Penjana.
This means that for those who take out a bank loan, you have received a letter from your bank that your monthly payment will be reduced due to the benchmark interest rate reduction. If you choose to keep the available payments, it will shorten the entire period. The reduction of policy rate is a clear indication that the country’s economy will face challenging times. What the government has done is intervene to make money circulate in the market by making lending rates cheaper, so people have more cash. Thus, we can reuse spending to help businesses continue to survive as in a basic economy, the more money is transformed into more impact on people and society. This pandemic will impact private consumption by moderating household income in the services, agriculture, and manufacturing sectors as well as by elevated household debt.
As responsible citizens, we can help move the country’s economy through continuing physical and online purchases on all platforms. This can help us as consumers to get the goods we need, sellers in the business as well as the government to reduce direct interactions that can reduce the cases of Covid infections. Through orders from the main players such as GrabFood, Foodpanda, DeliverEat, Bungkusit consumers can have their favourite meals via food delivery via apps because of the lockdown and also help those riders. Spend and continue to spend carefully to drive the country’s economy.
The government has implemented various assistant packages which for me touches almost the entire population, so we as citizens must help the government by continuing to spend carefully. I would like to end the article with the words of President Kennedy: “Do not ask what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.”
* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail.