(File pix) An aerial view of Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. The cost of living in Malaysia is the lowest among Asean member countries in 2017, a global survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit has revealed. Pix by Asyraf Hamzah

KUALA LUMPUR: The cost of living in Malaysia is the lowest among Asean member countries in 2017, a global survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit has revealed.

Commenting on the survey’s findings, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said this positive assessment is the result of various efforts undertaken by the government to reduce the burden of the cost of living on Malaysians.

The Economist survey compared the prices of goods and services in 133 cities around the world.

"However, I want to stress here that this recognition does not mean that our efforts to reduce the burden of the rising cost of living has been completed," Najib said in his latest post, titled ''Prime Minister's Speech on the Quality of People's Life” on his official blog, najibrazak.com.

He said the issue of inflation is a focus of the government in a bid to transform Malaysia into a fully-developed, high-income nation.

"We have done a lot of work to ease the people's burden related to the rising cost of living. Among the efforts are the price control of goods by the authorities, the distribution of BR1M (1Malaysia People's Aid), eradication of middlemen, and so on," he said.

The Prime Minister also said the government has always tried to improve the people's income through various training and education programmes, such as the National Entrepreneur Group Economic Fund (Tekun Nasional ); the Retail Shop Transformation Programme (Tukar); the Bumiputera Agenda Steering Unit (Teraju); the Bumiputera Entrepreneurs Start-up Scheme (Superb); the Majlis Amanah Rakyat (Mara); the Young Entrepreneurs Fund; and the e-Rezeki and Facilitation Fund.

In terms of cost control, Najib said the government will continue implementing programmes such as the 1Malaysia People's Shop (KR1M); the 1Malaysia Housing Programme (PR1MA); the 1Malaysia Clinics; and the 1Malaysia Book Voucher.

"I really hope that these programmes can help improve the quality of people's lives because that's what I try to do every day as a Prime Minister," he said. -- Bernama

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