In youth manifesto, BN pledges RM200m for ‘agropreneurs, seapreneurs’

Barisan Nasional youth supporters wave placards during the Barisan Youth Manifesto launching by Umno Youth chief, Khairy Jamaluddin at Merdeka Hall, PWTC, Kuala Lumpur, April 10, 2018. — Picture by Hari Anggara
Barisan Nasional youth supporters wave placards during the Barisan Youth Manifesto launching by Umno Youth chief, Khairy Jamaluddin at Merdeka Hall, PWTC, Kuala Lumpur, April 10, 2018. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, April 10 — Barisan Nasional’s (BN) manifesto for the youths launched tonight has eight pledges, chief among them to strengthen rural economies, guarantee more job opportunities, and increase income and training for young workers.

The creation of ‘agropreneur’ and ‘seapreneur’

To assist youths in rural areas, BN Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin has promised to allocate RM180 million to fund young farmers, expected to benefit up to 10,000 “agropreneurs”.

Another RM20 million will be allocated to fund “seapreneurs”, affecting up to 1,000 young fishermen.

To create this new breed of rural youth entrepreneurs, he has promised to expand the rural digital economy through various programmes such as eUsahawan, eRezeki and eLadang while making it cheaper for youths to obtain a B2 motorcycle license under the MyLesen programme.

At the manifesto launch tonight, Khairy echoed BN chairman Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s promise to Felda settlers with a RM5,000 incentive for all, special replanting grant and to write off all replanting debts as well as debts incurred in purchasing Felda Global Venture shares.

In the manifesto, he said: “By assisting the youths in rural areas in every district, we will generate more job opportunities and guarantee that rural youths will succeed in the digital world. We will assist farmers and fishermen with funds and training programmes.”

One million jobs for youths

BN has also promised that youths will be able to take part in national infrastructure mega projects. He expected this to be able to generate more job opportunities as well.

More than one million youths will also benefit and be able to obtain career opportunities under Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), as he plans on expanding the National TVET Boot Camp short courses and premises nationwide.

Another five million schoolchildren will be prepared with the relevant skill sets to face the Digital Industrial Revolution 4.0 while more than one million tertiary education students will be receiving PTPTN loans.

Khairy has also promised to create more high skill job opportunities by developing high tech industries and through MyInternship programme where university students have the opportunity to receive industrial training.

Boosting youth income

Young teachers can rejoice under BN’s leadership with the introduction of a special incentive if they hold tuition classes after school hours while reducing administrative duties.

Under the Fair Works Commission, Khairy promised to improve the market’s salary scale while increasing minimum wage.

He has also promised to reduce the nation’s reliance on foreign workers by 15 per cent. The ratio of employee compensation will also be increased up to 40 per cent of the national gross domestic product.

“We will begin to intervene on salary increment to improve the market’s salary scheme. We will also assist the youths to pick up new online skills or their productivity by assistance to purchase work related software.

“Companies are encouraged to offer flexible working hours and the youths have the opportunity to earn more income through the Orang-E portal,” he said in the manifesto.

Creating more youth entrepreneurs

BN will also allocated RM5 billion assistance into the Youth Entrepreneurial Network — a one-stop centre for all government agencies tasked with assisting young entrepreneurs. The network will reduce bureaucratic red tape while expediting approvals for assistance.

Tax exemption and a special fund will be granted to encourage renowned brands or companies to assist small time entrepreneurs while a digital transformation for the small and medium enterprises via grants and credit loan guarantee is expected to assist them gain access into the international market.

A special allocation for Sabah and Sarawak entrepreneurs will be made available under the National Development Fund where they will provide carve-out and compete initiatives.

Easing the burden of young families

Newly-wedded couples or those planning to get married will receive a financial assistance to ease wedding expenses.

A special parental course in 168 locations nationwide will also be made available for expecting parents while the existing ADAM50 initiative will increase the financial assistance for families with newborns.

Parents who save up for their children’s education will also enjoy a special incentive while children below 12 from low income families living in low cost housing schemes will have access to art and sports classes.

Micro-credit loan conditions specifically for part-time women entrepreneurs will be made available to encourage more women generate income.

Increasing quality of life

Like the main manifesto, affordable housing has received special attention from BN Youth. It has promised to increase the number of affordable homes, make rent more affordable, transit homes, rent-to-own homes and assisting them in getting deposits.

A special bank will be created to stimulate affordable home ownership. The bank will make loan processes for homes below RM300,000 easier.

Khairy also promised to reduce broadband subscription by 50 per cent while doubling its speed in phases. Public universities will be among the first to enjoy high speed internet access of 100 gigabit per second.

Under BN’s rule, each state constituency will enjoy a public internet centre with a minimum speed of 20 megabit per second.

No one left behind

To ensure that everyone will enjoy Malaysia’s economic success, Khairy has given his guarantee to a broad segment of Malaysian society that has been left behind and forgotten.

Islamic religious school graduates will be paired up with Halal Industry Companies while the Orang Asli youths will have job opportunities with green companies. Training will also be provided for disabled youths so they may enter the mainstream job market.

Former drug abusers, former juvenile convicts, the homeless and single teen mothers will also be granted a second chance through training programmes so they too may enter the mainstream job market.

Youth participation in national administration

Youths will also be able to decide on national and local agenda. Khairy promised to establish a Youth Local Council chaired by the local council presidents or mayor so they may debate issues pertaining to youths.

He also promised a 35 per cent youth participation on Rukun Tetangga leadership committees while under the [email protected] programme, the best ideas from youths voted under the MyCadang application will be submitted to the Cabinet on a monthly basis.

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