1Malaysia discount card programme set to benefit 3.5m cardholders

05 Jun 2015 / 17:48 H.

    KUALA LUMPUR: The 1Malaysia Discount Card (1MDC) programme took off with the introduction of the Consumer Squad Card and 1Malaysia Student Discount Card (KADS1M) in 2012, under the auspices of the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism's (KPDNKK) Consumerism Movement Division.
    These discount cards, which are unique in the sense that they also double up as identification cards, were launched for the benefit of certain target groups.
    These innovations were drawn from original ideas and were neither copied nor adapted from any other national or international project.
    The 1MDC programme is aimed at helping underprivileged groups like persons with disabilities, retirees and students to optimise their purchasing power.
    These needy groups are being oppressed by market pressures brought about by the dynamics of the changing economy.
    The discount card programme was initiated with this in mind to enable these people to cope with the rising cost of living.
    Under the 1MDC programme, an initiative of the National Blue Ocean Strategy (NBOS), KPDNKK shares a smart partnership with various participating merchants - comprising private companies and traders - which offer price cuts and discounts on various goods and services to the holders of the Consumer Squad Card, KADS1M, 1Malaysia Privilege Card (1MPC), Ex-Serviceman's Card (KBT), Government Pensioner's Card and Disabled Person's Card (Kad OKU).
    Being an integrated NBOS initiative, KPDNKK is overseeing the smooth implementation of the 1MDC programme with the cooperation of the relevant ministries and agencies, like the Ministry of Finance (MOF), Public Services Department (PSD), Veteran Affairs Department (JHEV) in the Ministry of Defence and Social Welfare Department (JKM) in the Ministry of Women, Community and Family Development.
    KPDNKK's smart partnership with its merchant partners, besides benefiting the various cardholders, also yields positive returns for the participating businesses for the following reasons:
    I. They are able to gain access to a wider market as there about 3.5 million cardholders throughout Malaysia;
    II. They get to enjoy wider promotion as their company logos are uploaded on the ministry's website at www.1pengguna.com, with hyperlinks to the related websites of 1MPC, MOF, JKM, JHEV and PSD.
    III. They can participate in selected programmes organised by KPDNKK and are provided free booths to exhibit or sell their products.
    There are several objectives behind the implementation of the 1MDC programme, the main ones being:
    I. Facilitating transformation by enabling the government to explore new avenues through which the people can gain generally without the government incurring heavy costs;
    II. Creating synergy among the various government agencies to enable various identification cards to serve as discount cards as well.
    III. Encouraging the private sector to discharge their corporate social responsibility through the concept of "Giving Back to the Public"; and
    IV. Providing benefits to the needy, like persons with disabilities, pensioners, students, single mothers, farmers, fishermen, youth, civil servants and others.

    The Consumer Squad Card constitutes a loyalty and discount card, besides serving as an indentification card to indicate that the cardholder is a member of the Consumer Squad.
    This initiative is being undertaken with the cooperation of Bank Rakyat. The Consumer Squad Card only serves as a flash card and does not offer rewards for points accumulated.
    Consumer Squad members only need to flash their cards to be entitled to privileges.
    Membership registration can be done on the following website: www.1pengguna.com/SkuadPengguna
    This card is provided to all members of KPDNKK's volunteer corps, who are willing to be the "eyes and ears" of the government and ready to lodge reports with the ministry against errant traders and business malpractices.
    As of May 12, 2015, a total of 232,041 consumers have registered themselves as squad members.
    KADS1M was introduced by KPDNKK with the objective of reducing the financial burden of undergraduates studying in private and public institutions of higher learning (IPT) throughout the country.
    Malaysian students studying overseas are also entitled to use this card. As of April 2014, the card has been offered to Malaysian students studying in the following countries: Lebanon, Morocco, Jordan, Scotland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Egypt (students from Perak), Indonesia, Russia, United Kingdom, South Korea and Australia.
    KADS1M also constitutes a flash card and does not offer points for rewards. Students only have to produce their KADS1M, together with their student card or identity card, to obtain discounts.
    This card is offered free to all IPT students of Malaysian origin. A RM2.00 charge is imposed when replacing lost cards.
    A total of 1,717,091 students possessed KADS1M, as of May 12, 2015.
    The 1MPC programme is an initiative under NBOS-7, and is a product of the collaborative efforts of three ministries - MOF, Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Home Affairs.
    This programme entitles some 242,000 members of the police and armed forces to various price cuts and discounts when they shop for goods and services at the outlets of participating merchants.
    Among the goods and services for which discounts are available for cardholders are daily essentials, sports equipment, vehicle spare parts, health gadgets and hotel accommodation.
    This card is issued to all qualified former officers and members of the armed forces. Besides enabling cardholders to identify themselves as ex-servicemen, the card also entitles them and their dependents to free treatment at government hospitals and clinics.
    This card is actually an extension of the 1MPC and it was introduced in recognition of the services rendered by the retired soldiers. KBT entitles cardholders to discounts offered by the various participating merchants.
    Prior to being brought under the umbrella of 1MDC, the Ex-Servicemen's Card only entitled cardholders to hospital benefits and a 50 percent discount on KTM train tickets.


    Persons with disabilities are deemed as those who have long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory disabilities, which can curtail their full and effective participation in society.
    There are seven categories of disabilities, namely hearing, sight, speech, physical, learning problems, mental and multiple disabilities.
    An application for Kad OKU can be made at any district Social Welfare Office.
    The applicant can either fill up the OKU registration form manually or apply online at http://spmoku.jkm.gov.my/smoku.
    Each application, however, has to be certified by a medical officer.
    So far a total of 471,714 persons with disabilities have registered with JKM.
    Further details pertaining to the conditions for the registration of disabled persons and the categories of disabilities can be obtained by downloading the Guidelines on Registration of Persons With Disabilities from the department's website at www.jkm.gov.my.
    Prior to being placed under the 1MDC programme, Kad OKU entitled cardholders to more than 20 privileges, among them being aid extended by JKM. The department provides an allowance for disabled workers, aid for the purchase of artificial and support devices, launching grants, aid for the care of displaced persons with disabilities and those suffering from chronic illnesses, and aid for disabled persons who are unable to work.
    Persons with disabilities are also entitled to free treatment at government hospitals and exempted from paying road tax by the Road Transport Department (this only applies to those with physical disabilities).
    They are also entitled to participate in the Ministry of Human Resources' Business Incentive Assistance Scheme for Disabled Persons, as well as certain facilities provided by Telekom Malaysia Bhd and Malaysia Airlines Bhd, among others.
    This is an identification card that enables pensioners to obtain medical benefits at government hospitals and clinics.
    The cardholder's spouse and children aged below 21 (who are unmarried) are also entitled to the card's privileges.
    Children of the cardholder who are pursuing their higher studies can enjoy the privileges until the completion of their first degree programme, as long as they remain unmarried.
    No age limit is imposed on the cardholder's children with permanent mental or physical disabilities, who are unable to fend for themselves.
    Prior to joining the 1MDC programme, the Pensioner's Card could only be used at government hospitals.
    Meanwhile, a total of 2,316 businesses have joined the 1MDC programme as participating merchants as of May 13, 2015, to offer their goods and services to the various discount cardholders.
    *This article was written by the Secretary-General of the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism, Datuk Seri Alias Ahmad.


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