2,713 SMEs closed in Malaysia since MCO implemented
This was mainly due to movement control order (MCO) measures implemented during the pandemic.
Data from the Social Security Organisation (Socso) showed that 221 employers received financial aid from the wage subsidies programme (WSP), but have shuttered during the same period, said HR Minister Datuk Seri M Saravanan.
To reduce the number of bankrupts, the government has doubled the debt ceiling for those seeking bankruptcy from RM50,000 (US$12,230) to RM100,000. (US$24,462). The amendment was made to the Temporary Measures for Reducing the Impact of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Act 2020.
Socso has received 388 complaints by employees towards employers who abused WSP payments amounting to nearly RM20 million. “Socso will suspend payment to employers who are suspected of making false claims until the investigations on such complaints are complete,” Saravanan said.
Of the 388 complaints, 156 were those involving false claims and the misuse of WSP funds, and Socso will claim those funds back from these employers. The remaining 232 complaints are under investigation.
In addition, Socso found that 5,537 employers breached the terms and condition of the WSP by terminating employees and not paying contributions to Socso.