KUALA LUMPUR: The government’s total debt and liability exposures are estimated to be RM1.257 trillion, or 87.3 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), as of end of September 2020, said Deputy Finance Minister II Mohd Shahar Abdullah.
Federal debt as of end-September amounted to RM874.3 billion or 60.7 per cent of GDP, he said.
“However, based on statutory limit calculations, the federal debt, comprising Malaysian Government Securities (MGS), Malaysian Government Investment Issues (MGII) and Malaysia Islamic Treasury Bills (MITB), comprised only 56.6 per cent of GDP, which is less than the 60 per cent limit set recently,” he said during the Dewan Rakyat sitting today.
He was replying to Amanah president Mohamad Sabu’s (PH-Kota Raja) questions on the government’s current debt position and the debt-to-GDP ratio.
“The government is committed to ensuring the refinancing of its debts is implemented in an orderly manner according to schedule,” Mohd Shahar said.
In view of the prolonged Covid-19 pandemic crisis, he said, the government would focus on economic recovery, especially to safeguard the people’s welfare and support business activities.
Mohd Shahar said after the economy had recovered, the government would go back to implementing fiscal consolidation measures to ensure the Federal Government’s debt and financial liability exposures remain well-controlled and manageable.
The measures would include expanding the revenue base, strengthening tax administration and enforcement, and increasing spending efficiency to contain the federal deficit level, he explained.
“Thus, it will reduce the government’s dependence on borrowings and curb the Federal Government’s debt and financial liability exposures,” added Mohd Shahar. -Bernama