Taska can operate under CMCO

‘Taska’ or public and private childcare centres or nurseries are allowed to operate under the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO), said the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry (KPWKM). Its minister, Datuk Seri Rina Mohd Harun, however, said they must obtain the approval of the respective State Social Welfare Departments (JKM) and follow the stipulated standard operating procedures for CMCO prior to this. “The ministry understands the economic sector must function as normal and parents have to go out to work,” she said. On the SOP at the centres, Rina said they included giving the children their baths at home and complying with the schedule to send their children to the ‘taska’ to avoid a congestion. A ‘taska’ is a nursery for children aged four years old and below. (Bernama)

Stemming retirement crisis harder if contributors keep tapping into EPF savings

Putrajaya could face massive hurdles in its bid to fix a potential retirement crisis by allowing private contributors to withdraw from their core Employees Provident Fund (EPF) savings, financial analysts and trade unions have warned. As many as 2.2 million contributors have depleted their Account 2 funds while up 32% have less than RM5,000 in their Account 1, the private pension fund manager said recently as it called for urgent solutions to avert a financial storm. Under Budget 2021, the Perikatan Nasional administration will let retrenched workers withdraw a maximum of RM500 monthly from their Account 1 for a total of 12 months starting January next year. Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Aziz revealed this week that a third of contributors have less than RM5,000 in the same account, while another 10% have savings of between RM5,000 and RM10,000. Financial planners believe the policy, though necessary, may also have harmful long-term consequences even for better-off contributors, a large number of whom are still found to have poor financial literacy. (Malay Mail)

Savills: Beware of demand and supply mismatch of affordable housings

The government’s effort in promoting public housing and affordable homes is laudable, but it is equally important to ensure the supply meets the actual market needs, said Savills (Malaysia) managing director Datuk Paul Khong. Commenting on Budget 2021, Khong noted that the initiative is good, but the government needs to study the location, sizes and pricings of the affordable homes and public housings, to ensure it could benefit the low- and middle-income groups. Nonetheless, Khong noted that while Budget 2021 has placed a big emphasis on the national economic recovery and the needs and welfare of the people, it does not offer sufficient stimulants to the general property market. “There is nothing for the mid- and high-end primary and secondary residential housing sectors, though these are also important market segments for the revival of the lacklustre property market,” he said. Meanwhile, he noted that the infrastructure sector has been given a good shot in the arm due to its multiplier effect on the economy. (The Edge)

Gamuda Land unveils Virtual Experiential Gallery

Gamuda Land has launched the Gamuda Land Virtual Experiential Gallery to better engage with customers. As the name suggests, the digital gallery is built entirely on a 3D virtual reality platform that allows prospective buyers to have a 360° view of the developer’s properties — the first of its kind in Malaysia, according to the company. Gamuda Land CEO Ngan Chee Meng said the gallery was created after careful consideration of the customer experience, in addition to being relevant and complemented their physical galleries. “Now, they can walk into their future home and check out the surrounding environment before it is built. Akin to our physical galleries, social activities and events will be held virtually from time to time, further heightening our engagement with customers,” he said. He added that the launch of the gallery was timely, especially with the ongoing movement restrictions and more people opting to stay at home. The Gamuda Land Virtual Experiential Gallery officially went live on Oct 23. The web-based platform can be accessed at www.gamudaland.com.my/vegallery via any mobile device or computer. (The Edge)

Gamuda Land Virtual Experiential Gallery
The Gamuda Land Virtual Experiential Gallery is built entirely on a virtual reality platform, in the 3D format and with full 360° views. (Photo by Gamuda Land)

Govt to launch Illegal Immigrant Recalibration Plan from Nov 16

The government will be launching the Illegal Immigrant Recalibration Plan encompassing two main components – Return Recalibration Programme and the Labour Recalibration Programme which would be implemented from Nov 16 to June 30 next year for illegal immigrants who are in the country. Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin said the Return Recalibration Programme allows illegal immigrants to return to their country of origin voluntarily subject to specific stipulated conditions. “The plan is for illegal immigrants in the country who wish to work legally and for those who want to return to their countries of origin to do so. We are giving a period up to June 30,” he said. Hamzah said the four sectors namely construction, manufacturing, plantation and agriculture are allowed to employ illegal immigrants during the implementation Illegal immigrant Recalibration Plan. Through this plan, Hamzah said the government is expected to collect RM95 million from compounds and other payments imposed on illegal immigrants and employers. (Bernama)