i-Sinar seems to be a hot topic recently. Here’s an update.
If you are an Employees Provident Fund (EPF) member, then this is news to you. If you are an EPF member and you are facing financial difficulties, for example lost your job, being put on unpaid leave and even having no source of income, then this is good news to you. This is about i-Sinar programme. The amount which one could withdraw is RM10,000. This is an increase as it was RM9,000 previously. This withdrawal is available to those from the formal sector, self-employed, and whether or they are still active contributors.
Article in nst.com.my. Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz told the Dewan Rakyat today that the decision to widen eligibility for withdrawals was made after a meeting with EPF this morning. He said, “Whether you have lost your job or experienced pay cuts; whether your do formal work or are self-employed; whether you are an active member or not, you can apply for the i-Sinar facility.”
He added, “From the two million eligible members before this, now more than eight million members will be eligible. Members can apply for this online, or go to an EPF office. Just show proof of job loss or pay cuts.” Zafrul had announced that the government would allow those who lost their jobs or had their incomes reduced as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic to withdraw from their EPF Account 1. Article in nst.com.my
EPF savings are meant for retirement. The money we withdraw today, even if it’s just RM10,000 could actually become RM40,000 when we retire because we continue to receive annual returns to our savings in EPF. Thus, when we withdraw that RM10,000 and uses all of it today, then the future cost is that we have used up potentially RM40,000 of our funds which could have helped us a lot when we retire. This is why it is so important that any politician who simply just want to win and kept asking for this should be AWARE too.
Only one wish
I just hope that the COVID-19 pandemic will be over soon and we could all go back to our normal lives. Then i-Sinar is not so needed like currently. When this happens, the number of unemployed Malaysians will also drop and this will help many get back on their feet versus relying on this withdrawal which may not last for a long time unless they get back a job which pays them regular salary. Vaccines are said to be in final stages of testing and production has actually started for some of them. Keeping my fingers crossed that everything will be just fine within 2021.
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