589 individuals in arts, culture and entertainment sectors receive assistance through Cendana initiative

KUALA LUMPUR: The government has channelled RM6.71 million as of Feb 4 to 589 applicants for the Cultural Economy Development Agency (CENDANA) rehabilitation initiative, in an effort to support those in the arts, culture and entertainment sectors.

Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz said those in the creative industry were advised to use the facility provided, and could apply for assistance from the relevant agencies.

Previously, the government had allocated RM10 million for the benefit of 3,000 individuals and organisations in the country’s arts and culture sector.

"Recipients will receive different grant sizes depending on the application and targeted programme," he said in the 84th National Inter-Agency Economic Stimulus Implementation and Coordination Unit (LAKSANA) report released today.

Meanwhile, he said 376 funding applications for the tourism sector under the National Economic Recovery Plan (PENJANA) for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), as well as Micro SMEs affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, had been approved, with total funding of RM75.5 million.

According to Tengku Zafrul, a total of RM90.5 million has also been channeled to 13,891 businesses in the form of grants and loans for digital subscription services.

He said the allocation was provided to support the use of technical and digital services for SMEs and mid-tier companies (MTCs) under PENJANA, where a total of RM700 million had been allocated to assist and encourage SMEs and MTCs towards digitalising operations and trade channels.

Apart from that, he said, the government had agreed to provide an additional subsidy of RM130 million a month to reduce the cost of poultry and eggs.

"This is to ensure that the ceiling price of chicken for consumers is reduced from RM9.10 per kilogramme (kg) to RM8.90 per kg, and that the prices of eggs for all grades remain the same," he said.

Previously, the government announced a subsidy of RM0.60 per kg for chickens and RM0.05 per egg for poultry farmers, taking into account the increase in costs to produce them.

Meanwhile, Tengku Zafrul said an additional RM3.5 billion was allocated for more than 11,000 permanent appointments in the Health Ministry from 2022 to 2025, including 4,186 permanent appointments for medical officers, dental officers and pharmacy officers in 2022. - Bernama

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