Dismay in Malaysia at govt's growing use of reserves to cope with Covid-19 crisis

The official debt on government books was over RM700 billion when Pakatan Harapan took over in mid-2018.PHOTO: REUTERS

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's struggle to balance its books while keeping the economy ticking has seen successive governments raid statutory funds more aggressively after almost emptying the Treasury, with the Covid-19 crisis deepening the fiscal squeeze.

This has led the barely year-old Perikatan Nasional (PN) administration to greenlight withdrawals by private sector workers of a whopping RM77 billion (S$25 billion) so far of their retirement savings from the Employees Provident Fund (KWSP).

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