KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 14 – Bank Negara is calling on the people to learn financial management in the face of the rising cost of living. Assistant governor Abu Hassan Alshari Yahaya said in a challenging climate of rising costs, Malaysians did not have enough savings for retirement and also had high debts.
“Issues such as this should be given attention to ensure consumers don’t have excessive household debts,” he said when launching the Prudent Spending Month 2014 campaign themed “Financial Education For All” here, yesterday. Abu Hassan said according to statistics from the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), as at the end of last year, 69 per cent of EPF contributors aged 54 had less than RM50,000 in savings.
“The amount can last only five years if they spend RM800 a month. This is worrying as the cost of living keeps rising.” Present at the launch was Federation of Malaysian Consumers Associations (Fomca) president Mohd Yusof Abdul Rahman.
The campaign, organised by Fomca and the Association of Banks in Malaysia, was aimed at educating the public on developing and maintaining a healthy spending habit and financial management. Yusof said household debts had risen to 86.8 per cent last year, from 80.5 per cent in 2012. He said household debts had reached RM704.6 billion, hence the public awareness campaign on financial planning.