KUALA LUMPUR: Some 80 per cent of diesel users will receive enough under the Budi Madani programme, which provides a monthly cash assistance, to make up the difference between the current diesel price and the new price to be determined later.

Finance Minister II Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan said the cash aid of RM200 per month was determined after studying data in terms of usage as well as data from the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DoSM).

“The data obtained from DoSM came from surveys in Malaysia involving diesel vehicles, especially in Peninsular Malaysia,” he said during a programme on targeted diesel subsidy implementation aired on Astro Awani tonight.

Hence, he said, the assistance can cover the price rise, as the cash assistance is the mechanism chosen based on existing data.

Amir Hamzah said the Madani Economy framework focuses on three important areas, including raising the ceiling by expanding the national revenue to allow for reinvestment towards matters seen as important for the people, enhancing the people’s well-being, and boosting the country’s governance to make it more efficient.

“The targeted subsidy implementation is an initiative that fulfils the three focus areas.

“If we can reduce existing leakages, the nation’s revenue will rise and we can use it to benefit the people in terms of infrastructure, healthcare and education,” he said.

Amir Hamzah said the diesel subsidy payout, which was only RM1.4 billion in 2019, had swelled tenfold to RM14.4 billion last year.

He expressed hope that everyone would understand that the government’s efforts in implementing measures to revive the national economy were for the people’s benefit and to achieve a better fiscal space for the nation.

The estimated RM4 billion in savings from the diesel subsidy rationalisation is expected to give a larger fiscal space for the government in order to raise the quality of various services that are important to the people.

On May 27, the Ministry of Finance (MoF) announced details of the “Program Bantuan Subsidi Madani” or Bumi Madani for eligible individuals owning diesel vehicles, as well as agriculture and commodity smallholders.

The Budi Madani programme complements the government’s existing efforts to target diesel subsidy through the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Cost of Living’s MySubsidi Diesel system.

Eligible individual owners of diesel vehicles, including small farmers and plantation smallholders, will receive RM200 per month in conjunction with the implementation of diesel subsidy targeting.

The registration for Budi Madani opened on May 28 following the decision to implement targeted diesel subsidy.