The Prihatin Special Grant (GKP) is an initiative introduced in the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis under the PRIHATIN Economic Stimulus Package to alleviate the cash flow burden of micro SMEs that are not able to operate during the MCO. The positive impact of this initiative has spurred on the Government to introduce a series of GKPs, bringing the total allocation to RM6.1 billion that will benefit 1 million micro SMEs until December 2021.
The pandemic has no doubt been hard on everyone; and more so if you are an owner of a small business required to worry about overheads such as rental and salary.
Such a situation unfortunately occurred to a small-time clothing store business owner, Tay Chee Koon, who took a major hit when he was forced to close his shop during the pandemic last year following the implementation of the Movement Control Order due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With little income, he was already struggling to make ends meet, especially in having to fork out funds for the shop’s rental and utility bills. It pained him even more when he did not have the resources to pay his three employees their salary.
However, the soft-spoken entrepreneur breathed a sigh of relief when the Government announced various assistance, including the Prihatin Special Grant (GKP), to alleviate the burden of the business community affected by the pandemic.
Tay, who has been involved in the clothing industry since graduating from secondary school, quickly applied for GKP 1.0 and GKP 2.0 when it rolled out last year by the Government and was able to receive RM3,000. The government then initiated a special GKP Plus (GKP Tambahan) under the PERMAI package as an add-on to eligible entrepreneurs to receive a one-off cash payment of RM1,000. The financial aid helped Tay to cover the cost of kickstarting his business again. From there, he has received as much as RM4,000 from the Government. Tengku Zafrul has also announced that nearly one million micro-SMEs involving existing recipients of MCO 1.0 and MCO 2.0, as well as micro-SMEs that have been approved under MCO 3.0, will receive a payment of RM1,000 from June 10 in stages involving financial implications. An additional payment of RM500, involving an allocation of almost RM500 million, will be paid in July 2021 bringing the total amount under GKP 3.0 to RM1.5 billion.
Having gone through the ups and downs in business, his advice to other entrepreneurs is to never give up and make the best use of the benefits and assistance provided by the Government, adding that the notion that the process involved in applying for the government’s assistance is complicated because of the bureaucratic red tapes is false.