Malaysia has extended the movement control order (MCO) for another two weeks until April 14. Prime Minister. Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said he was briefed by the National Security Council and Health Ministry and the trend showed new Covid-19 positive cases had spiked. Malaysia recorded 172 new Covid-19 positive cases were reported Wednesday, bringing the cumulative cases to 1,796. The Prime Minister noted that in the past week alone, 673 new cases were reported.

Yesterday, the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (MIER) estimates that around 2.4 million Malaysians could lose their jobs if the MCO was extended for another two weeks. The think tank said in a statement that the 2.4 million would mainly consist of non-salaried jobs while unskilled workers would make up 67% of the figure. It also predicted that household incomes would drop 12% from the baseline, amounting to RM95 billion, due to the decrease in consumer spending by 11%. “Malaysia’s real GDP may shrink about 6.9% relative to the 2020 baseline. This translates into a -2.9% real GDP growth for 2020, relative to 2019. MIER called on Putrajaya to allocate a crisis budget relative to the RM95 billion losses, saying this would be needed to prevent companies from filing for bankruptcy, job losses and diminished household incomes.

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