Housing Ministry to carry out disinfection operation at ‘hotspots’ nationwide

The Ministry of Housing and Local Government (KPKT) will carry out “Public Disinfection Operation” at hotspot locations in the red and orange zones nationwide, in collaboration with the local government authorities (PBT) and solid waste management concession companies. Its minister Zuraida Kamaruddin said the integrated operation, conducted by the Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia (JBPM) and SWCorp, will also be carried out at the People’s Housing Programme (PPR) located in the red zone. Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said disinfection was carried out in two areas in Kluang district after 61 positive Covid-19 cases were identified in Kampung Datuk Ibrahim Majid and Bandar Baharu Datuk Ibrahim Majid. He also said 11 disinfection exercises had been done since March 23 by DBKL. (Malay Mail)

Register with LHDN for cash incentive, says Finance Ministry

Those who are eligible for financial assistance under the new economic stimulus package must register with the Inland Revenue Board (LHDN), says the Finance Ministry. Those who have registered for Bantuan Sara Hidup (BSH) and with LHDN before this need not register again. The ministry also said that the allocated financial aid of RM10bil under Bantuan Prihatin Nasional (BPN) will be made in two phases – by the end of this month and May. For those who have yet to register, new applications can be made from April 1 through the official LHDN website. On Friday, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced the stimulus package worth RM250bil to revive the sluggish economy due to the Covid-19 pandemic. (The Star Online)

Property developers in talks with BNM on plans to help market

The Real Estate and Housing Developers’ Association (Rehda) is in talks with Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) to work out plans to help the property market at a time when the country is on the brink of technical recession. Local banks are extending a helping hand to borrowers by not compounding the interest on loans during the six-month moratorium announced last week. BNM also announced that it is liberalising requirements on lending/finaning to the broad property sector. However, no further details were disclosed. CGS-CIMB Research had expected the central bank to relax rules for the property sector, such as loosening the 20% lending limit on the industry; uplifting the loan-to-value ratio on the third property; extending the loan tenure beyond 35 years; and gross income to be used for loan approval calculations instead of net income. However, the positive impact could be offset by negativity from the extension of the MCO to April 14, which could result in weaker new property sales and lower progress billings. (The Sun Daily)

Malaysia’s Top Glove overwhelmed by international orders

Malaysia’s Top Glove Corporation Bhd, the world’s largest glove maker, expects a product shortage as demand from Europe and the United States spikes because of the widening Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak is exceeding its capacity. The company has extended shipping times to cope with the demand surge, executive chairman Lim Wee Chai said. Lim said orders received in the past few weeks, mainly from Europe and the United States, were almost double the company’s production capacity. Top Glove can produce 200 million natural and synthetic rubber gloves a day. The World Health Organisation warned on Friday that the “chronic global shortage of personal protective gear” is among the most urgent threats to the virus containment efforts. (NST Online)

Covid-19: Malaysia reports 7 more deaths, 150 new cases

The Health Ministry yesterday reported seven additional deaths and 150 new Covid-19 coronavirus infections in Malaysia. This brings the Covid-19 toll in the country to 34 deaths and 2,470 infections. According to Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, of cases still undergoing treatment in hospital, 73 are in critical condition in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) – 52 of whom require breathing assistance. Meanwhile, 68 more patients recovered and were discharged from hospital, raising the tally of fully recovered cases to 388. Malaysia has, by far, the highest tally of infections in Southeast Asia. (NST Online)