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Fed govt agrees to channel 5% oil royalty to state

PUTRAJAYA, June 7 (Bernama) -- The Federal Government has agreed to channel at least five per cent of the oil royalty received by the country directly to Terengganu as an oil producing state.

Terengganu Menteri Besar Dr Ahmad Samsuri Mokhtar said the matter was agreed during the National Finance Council 2018 meeting chaired by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad at the Finance Ministry here today.

"It has been agreed upon in principle. The quantum will be discussed later. Most importantly it will be given directly to the state governments.

"It is a promise from the federal government. The people of Terengganu would like to thank the federal government for its commitment to directly channel the royalty," he told reporters after the meeting.

The meeting was also attended by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, menteri besar and chief ministers.

It was the first meeting chaired by Dr Mahathir after Pakatan Harapan won the 14th general election on May 9.

Ahmad Samsuri said Terengganu had not received oil royalty since 2000 and instead given compassionate payment which was channelled to federal government agencies in the state such as the Federal Development Department.

Sabah and Sarawak received five per cent oil royalty while Kelantan was also given compassionate payment since 2010.

On the allocation provided for opposition members of Parliament announced by Dr Mahathir yesterday, Ahmad Samsuri said he appreciated it.

"I would like to thank the federal government...whether the amount is small or big, we have to respect it. We really appreciate the federal government's commitment to help state governments regardless of political parties," he said.

Yesterday, Dr Mahathir announced that Pakatan Harapan members of parliament would get an allocation of RM500,000 while opposition MPs, RM100,000, to be paid out before Aidilfitri.

Asked whether the Terengganu state government would provide allocation for Barisan Nasional assemblymen, Ahmad Samsuri said, "We will look at the state's financial position before making any decision on it".



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