Deputy Finance Minister II, Mohd Shahar Abdullah has commented that the assimilation of financial literacy elements in lifestyle and day-to-day affairs is becoming increasingly important. This is especially so during the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to Mohd Shahar, the pandemic has greatly impacted life globally, which makes it even more important for people to take precautions when managing their finances now.
“There are those who take wise steps by reevaluating their financial position by looking for alternatives in navigating the new norms. However it is regretful that there are also vulnerable groups who are not financially prepared to face this unexpected situation,” he said during a webinar organised by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), held in conjunction with the Financial Literacy Month 2020 (FLM 2020).
For context, FLM 2020 was launched in early October 2020 by the Financial Education Network, and is part of an ongoing effort to raise the level of financial literacy among Malaysians of all ages. Its programmes cover a range of relevant topics, from investments and financial risk management.
The minister further quoted statistics from BNM’s 1H20 Financial Stability Review report to highlight the severity of the situation, noting that household debt had reached 87.5% of gross domestic product (GDP). Meanwhile, data from the Malaysian Insolvency Department indicated that 25% of bankruptcy cases from 2017 to 2019 is comprised of young people aged below 35 years. Figure-wise, this translates to 11,800 out of 46,760 individuals.
In light of such a situation, Mohd Shahar urged the Financial Education Network and its partners to strive towards realising the goals of the National Financial Literacy Strategy 2019-2023. “Our responsibility to increase the level of financial literacy among the community will be continued with a firm commitment to empower the people with financial knowledge and skills,” he said.
Mohd Shahar also expressed confidence that the various programmes offered via FLM 2020 will help to educate Malaysians in making wise financial decisions. You can find out more about FLN 2020 and its available programmes on FEN’s website.
(Source: The Sun Daily)