'Menyusur Kampong' project launched to give briefings on financial planning and TAP & SCP schemes
Bandar Seri Begawan - Any form of financial assistance provided by the government in efforts to make life better for its citizens will not be successful if each individual does not manage his or her finances properly. Success in ensuring that each individual and their family are able to step out of the poverty after receiving financial aids lies in the implementation of proper financial planning.
The importance of properly managed finance was lauded by the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Laila Diraja Dato Seri Setia Awg Hj Hazair bin Hj Abdullah, in his speech as Chairman of the Employees Trust Fund (TAP) Board and the SCP Board yesterday, at the launch of the "Menyusur Kampong" project.
Throughout the "Menyusur Kampong" project, TAP, with the assistance of Penghulu Mukims and village heads, will actively visit Mukims and villages to give briefings on financial planning as well as on the TAP and SCP (Supplemental Contributory Pension) schemes.
Focus will be given to the SCP scheme because it provides an opportunity for self-employed individuals to participate in the scheme on a voluntary basis and make monthly contributions of at least B$17.50 a month.
The government will also contribute a sum of $17.50 to their SCP account each month the self-employed participant makes a contribution.
The minister said, "To ensure the effectiveness of implementing financial planning for individuals and the community as a whole, a number of steps need to be taken, namely assessing the current financial position, setting a financial target, preparing a financial plan, implementing the financial plan and following with review on the financial plan.
"The basic fact in financial planning is that individuals and community need to have financial planning as soon as possible especially when they enter the work employment. However, for those who have been working for a long time and are still without financial planning, it is still not too late to have one," Pehin Dato Hj Hazair added.
"Individuals and the community need to have the positive impression of financial planning, not as something burdensome and restrictive, but as a way to guarantee that future finance needs and ease of mind are fulfilled during old age."
Earlier in his speech, the minister said, "The project is a continuation of the financial planning roadshow conducted by the Employees Trust Fund with the cooperation of various government agencies and non-government agencies since 2005, with the aim of creating a nation well-versed in financial planning."
He added, "This is in line with the titah of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam in conjunction with the 27th National Day celebration of Brunei Darussalam on February 21, 2011 whereby His Majesty mentioned among others that it is the country's effort to instil in the culture the need of financial management through financial planning."
The "Menyusur Kampong" project, he said, "is an united effort from the Employees Trust Fund, Community Development Department ( JAPEM) under the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports and village institutions of the Brunei-Muara District under the Ministry of Home Affairs to support His Majesty's titah so that the nation will instil in the culture the need of financial management through financial planning."
Pehin Dato Hj Hazair further said, "It is important to establish a united effort to create the community in this country to be well versed in the matters of financial planning and able to practise wise spending. Therefore, in expanding the scope of delivering financial planning to the informal sector, the Board of TAP has identified the important role and contributing support from Penghulu Mukims and village heads in together caring for the villagers, including in matters regarding financial planning."
Financial planning, he said, "can also support the government's objective in creating a social safety netand eradicate povertyinthe country. This is in line with the Wawasan Brunei 2035 objective of ensuring, among others, that the people of the country continue to live prosperously and are given appropriate social attention and follow by eradicating poverty which is the utmost top national agenda, with 'Zero Poverty' the utmost main objective of the country".
The Chairman of the TAP Board also highlighted the various measures and strategies that are in place for the people, namely the Micro Financing Scheme whereby as much as B$3,000 is provided under the programme that is run by JAPEM. The scheme is designed for citizens who are underprivileged, such as widows, to start up their business and to step out from poverty."
Other measures outlined by the minister are TAP Scheme and Supplementary Contributory Pensions (SCP) whereby it is hoped that both schemes will prevent individuals from falling into poverty after retirement.
The launch of the "Menyusur Kampong" project was followed by a presentation on financial planning, SCP, Tap and Housing Fund Schemes that was delivered to the Penghulu Mukims and village heads from the BruneiMuara District.
The purpose of the presentation was to enhance knowledge on the retirement schemes in the country provided by the government. It is meanwhile hoped that the information obtained will be shared with the people in each respective village.
The "Menyusur Kampong" project will also be held in other three districts. Also present at the ceremony were Legislative Council members YB Awg Hj A Ahmad bin Hj Hussin, YB Awg Hj Tahamit bin Hj Nudin and YB Awg Hj Jumat bin Akim, as well as Awg Hj Mohd Abdoh bin Dato Seri Setia Hj Abdul Salam, Permanent Secretary at the Prime Minister's Office, who is also Deputy Chairman of the TAP Board.
--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin