Over 10,000 bankruptcies and 1,200 companies forced to wind down during pandemic, says PM

KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 27): Malaysia saw 1,246 companies forced to wind down while 10,317 individuals registered for bankruptcy throughout the Covid-19 pandemic from March 2020 to July 2021, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said.

Of the forced winding down incidents, some 497 cases or 39.89% were companies registered in the federal territories, followed by Selangor with 273 cases or 21.91%.

Other states included Johor (90), Penang (63), Perak (53) and Sabah (52), Ismail Sabri said in his written reply to a question by Kepong Member of Parliament Lim Lip Eng in the Dewan Rakyat on Monday.

The winding down incidents peaked in November 2020 with 144 cases, before coming down and rebounded again in May 2021 with 134 cases.

On bankruptcies, Selangor topped the list with 2,555 cases or 24.76%, followed by the federal territories with 1,288 cases or 12.48%.

Other states leading the list were Johor (792), Perak (628), Sabah (623), Penang (488), Negeri Sembilan (481) Kedah (477) and Kelantan (419).

In the period, the month with the highest bankruptcy incidents recorded was September 2020 with 1,222 cases, followed by April 2021 with 1,090 cases.

“Based on the input from the Ministry of Finance (MoF), the government does not provide specific assistance for business owners who have terminated their businesses.

“On the other hand, the government undertakes the approach of providing assistance and incentives to support business continuity,” Ismail Sabri said.

For businesses, this includes the Prihatin Special Grant for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), Wage Subsidy Programme to support employment as well as Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF) levy exemption and bank loan moratorium to support business cash flow, as well as micro credit schemes.

For individuals, the government also provides job search allowances, income loss assistance, reskilling and upskilling programmes, cash assistance through Bantuan Prihatin Nasional and Bantuan Prihatin Rakyat, the loan moratorium, Employees Provident Fund (EPF) pension fund withdrawals and Covid-19 special aid, the prime minister added.

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