PUTRAJAYA, June 5 — The government is set to allocate RM75 million to help stimulate the gig economy in the country, says Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
In addition, he said RM50 million in matching grants would be allocated to the gig economy platforms who contribute for their gig workers towards the Social Security Organisation’s (Socso) employment injury scheme and the Employees Provident Fund’s (EPF) i-Saraan scheme.
“In an effort to encourage freelancing, the MDEC (Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation) will be provided with RM25 million for the Global Online Workforce (Glow) programme,” he said when presenting the short-term National Economic Recovery Plan that was broadcast live on local television stations today.
The gig economy is a short-term contract-based labour market or freelance work done by individuals driven by digital technology.
Meanwhile, Muhyiddin said the government and the private sector would co-finance the effort to encourage micro-enterprises as well as Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to shift towards digitalisation through matching grants totalling RM140 million.
“The allocation will be used for MDEC-led training, subsidies and sales assistance sessions with selected e-commerce platforms,” he said.
Muhyiddin said the government in collaboration with private companies, would also be running the ‘Shop Malaysia Online’ campaign to encourage people to shop online, with promotional codes and various discount vouchers to be distributed via e-commerce platforms.
“For a start, the government will allocate RM70 million, which will be matched by e-commerce platforms,” he said.
He said to encourage the public to support local products and services, the government would also continue with the ‘Buy Malaysia’ campaign, and among the initiatives to be implemented would be to encourage big supermarket chains to clearly tag or identify local products and also establish dedicated Malaysian products channels on e-commerce platforms.
Meanwhile, the prime minister said that in embracing the ‘new normal’, more Malaysians were beginning to use contactless payment.
To further encourage the use of the service, he said the government would be providing RM50 worth of e-wallet credits to eligible Malaysians.
“This (RM50 credit) will be matched with additional vouchers, cash-backs and discounts of RM50 from e-wallet service companies. This initiative which will start in July 2020, will benefit some 15 million Malaysians,” he said.