MIRI, Oct 27 -- Sarawak is among the states receiving the highest allocation under Budget 2020, said Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng.
He denied claims by certain quarters that the federal government was not fair in providing the allocation, with the state getting only RM4.4 billion for development expenditure.
“The amount of RM4.4 billion is for 621 projects in Sarawak in 2020, compared with RM4.3 billion for 569 projects in the state in 2019,” he said in his speech when opening the Sarawak DAP’s 19th annual convention here today.
Lim, who is DAP secretary-general, said the federal government is concerned with Sarawak’s development and proposed to increase the special grants under Article 112D of the Federal Constitution to the state to RM32 million effective next year, from RM16 million a year since 1969.
“It is the federal government’s hope to increase the amount up to RM64 million in five years,” he added.
He said the allocation under the Budget 2020 for Sarawak, included RM400 million for repair of dilapidated schools in the state.
“The federal government has taken steps to share 50 per cent of the tourism revenue collected from the respectively states, with RM2.6 million given to Sarawak in March from tourism revenue collected in the state in 2018,” he added.
On the proposed setting up of the Village Community Management Council (MPKK), involving almost 6,000 longhouses and villages in Sarawak next year, Lim said the Finance Ministry is prepared to provide the fund for the purpose.
The federal government agreed to the setting up of MPKK as preparation for the state election, scheduled in one and half-years, he said, adding that its presence would facilitate the channeling of funds by the federal government for implementation of projects in the rural areas.
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