MP SPEAKS | Yesterday, the Thai Parliament passed a RM252 billion economic support package to ease the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which included aid to farmers and informal workers such as street vendors and those employed in massage parlours and bars who have seen their work dry up.
A week ago, the Singapore Parliament passed a $$S33 billion supplementary budget aimed primarily at helping workers and businesses to tide over the Covid-19 crisis and the bleak economic outlook ahead.
Called the Fortitude Budget, it is Singapore’s fourth Budget in less than four months after the earlier Unity, Resilience and Solidarity Budgets, totalling close to S$S100 billion – or nearly 20 percent of gross domestic product – to support Singaporeans in the battle against the Covid-19 outbreak.
In the Philippines, the House of Representatives has continued to sit, using a combination of remote and face-to-face meetings since March 23 to pass legislation to give the government the necessary tools to fight Covid-19. A parliamentary "Defeat Covid-19" committee has been set up and meets by videoconference at least twice a week.
In Indonesia, the House of Representatives continued to meet focussing on regulations related to the Covid-19 outbreak, such as endorsing a bill revising the Disaster Management Law which will give more authority to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) and increase the minimum budget allocation for disaster management in the state budget.
Only in Malaysia is the Parliament locked down, with members of Parliament unable to perform their constitutional role...