Phase one of the Bantuan Prihatin Rakyat (BPR) assistance package has commenced, and will be rolled out in stages with 8.45 million recipients slated to receive their first payout soon. This will amount to a total of RM1.93 billion in disbursement, said Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz.
According to the minister, 4.4 million recipients (from households earning up to RM5,000 per month) will receive RM300 each, whereas 4.05 million unmarried individuals (earning up to RM2,000) will be provided with RM150. He also added that this first-phase payment is made to Bantuan Sara Hidup (BSH) 2020 and Bantuan Prihatin Nasional (BPN) B40 recipients who had been approved earlier.
Accordingly, these payments will be credited directly into the eligible individuals’ bank accounts, with the process having already begun since yesterday (24 February). Meanwhile, those who do not have a bank account can collect their payments in cash at Bank Simpanan Nasional (BSN) branches starting from today (25 February).
“Aid recipients in Sabah and Sarawak who do not have bank accounts would be receiving payment from 1 March to 1 April at locations to be announced later, together with Bantuan Prihatin Nasional (BPN 2.0),” Tengku Zafrul further said.
Separately, Bank Simpanan Nasional (BSN) encouraged recipients to check their status for the BPR assistance package through the Lembaga Hasil Dalam Negeri (LHDN) website. They can also contact LHDN via the BPR hotline at 1-800-88-2747 to do so.
The BPR aid was first announced during the tabling of Budget 2021, intended as a replacement for the BSH assistance package to assist B40 households. It featured a more specific set of eligibility criteria, and is also more targeted in its reach. Furthermore, the first instalment of this aid was originally scheduled for disbursement in May 2021, but was brought forward to assist individuals who are paid daily wages.