PETALING JAYA: The building of health clinics and solving the congestion problem in government hospitals will be given prominence in the 2024 budget.
The tabling of the budget will be the highlight of the third meeting of the second term of the 15th Parliament which begins tomorrow and ends on Nov 30, Bernama reported.
Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, who is also the finance minister, had earlier said the health and education ministries would continue to receive the largest allocations under the 2024 Madani budget.
Anwar will table the Supply Bill 2024 at 4pm on Friday.
The Parliament calendar indicates that the budget will be debated at the policy stage from Oct 16 to 26.
It would then be debated at the committee stage from Nov 6 to 27, before being approved by the Dewan Rakyat.
Among the bills that will be tabled for the second reading is the Control of Smoking Products for Public Health Bill 2023, also known as the GEG Bill, scheduled for Oct 10.
Health minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa had said the bill is a commitment by the ministry and the Madani government to ensure the health and safety of the people are protected from the dangers of smoking products.
Smoking has been reported to cost the country RM6 billion a year and this is a huge burden for the taxpayers.
The bill was tabled for the first reading on June 12 and was referred to a parliamentary health committee to strengthen it so that it could be supported by all parties.
The Inland Revenue Board of Malaysia (Amendment) Bill 2023 is also expected to be tabled during the meeting. It will allow for the appointment of Sabah and Sarawak representatives as board members.
Deputy finance minister Ahmad Maslan said the tabling was in line with the decision of the Cabinet meeting on June 5 to respect and give more power to Sabah and Sarawak in the spirit of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 Implementation Action Council.
Dewan Rakyat Speaker Johari Abdul hoped the new meeting would produce quality debates and ideas for the development of the country.
He said it was important for MPs to show good values because studies show that young people are increasingly interested in listening to debates and following developments in the House.