Minister sets 2030 target to end poverty

The poverty rate dropped to 5.6% in June compared to 7.6% in 2016, says Mustapa Mohamed.

JELI: Malaysia is expected to eradicate poverty by 2030 in line with the United Nations’ goal to end poverty and famine, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Mustapa Mohamed.

He said an all-party parliamentary group was formed last year to engage with more local communities and achieve sustainable development goals.

In September 2015, all 193 member countries of the UN adopted the 2030 agenda for sustainable development and its framework to ensure a prosperous and peaceful future for the people and planet, which is to be achieved through partnerships between the government, private sector and society.

Mustapa said “Malaysia is working to realise the agenda especially in ending poverty and famine, at the same time there are improvements to be made.”

However, Mustapa said the agenda to end poverty would be difficult due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The poverty rate in Malaysia had dropped to 5.6% at June, compared to 7.6% recorded in 2016, he said. However unemployment had also decreased to 4.9% in June, compared to 5.3% in May, following the actions taken by the government to revive the economy.

“Based on the Statistics Department’s numbers, 773,200 people were unemployed in June while in May there were 826,100 people. This positive development shows that the country’s economy is improving, however, serious attention should be given to this matter because of the broad definition of unemployment being used,” he said.

Mustapa said the unemployed is defined as those who are not working and are in search of employment, hence workers who are temporarily jobless during the movement control order, including those given leave without pay, are not categorised as unemployed.

He said the government was channelling aid through various agencies such as Socso to the 768,000 workers under this category.