COME Friday, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak will unveil measures and incentives to boost the country's economy and improve the well-being of Malaysians during the 2014 Budget presentation in Parliament.
Certainly, the budget should not be considered as an "election budget", given that the country just had its 13th general election in May. However, as a responsible and committed government, the task of coming up with measures and incentives that benefit the people should continue.
Although some analysts think that 2014 Budget will not be exciting, there are interests, including from abroad, on what the government wants to do to address the declining growth and ensure the well-being of Malaysians.
At the 23rd Asean Summit in Brunei recently, the prime minister said the budget will focus on strengthening the economy so that the country is resilient in light of global economic uncertainties.
A key focus of the budget will be on the principle of enhancing domestic resilience, as it is vital for Malaysia to sustain its economy.
It is heartening to know that the government will come out with measures to ease the burden of the middle-income group, particularly those in the low-middle income bracket.
Recently, Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Mohamad Hanadzlah said unlike the 1Malaysia People's Aid (BR1M) payments enjoyed by those in the low-income group, the government will look at other means to help those in the low-middle income group.
The government is also looking at establishing initiatives that provide convenience for people to gain access to housing facilities.
Housing and basic infrastructure development, two issues that top the people's wishlist, will be the focus of 2014 Budget.
The impending implementation of the proposed goods and services tax (GST) also seems to be a talking point.
Analysts expect the GST to be announced on Friday, but its implementation taking effect only in 2015, as it will take about a year to, among others, educate the people about it.
The GST was first tabled in Parliament on December 16 2009 to replace the existing Sales Tax and Services Tax, but withdrawn last year for amendments.
Interestingly, the government has also provided an online platform - 1Malaysia.com.my - for Malaysians to share their views and vote on ideas for 2014 Budget.
More than 600 ideas were submitted to the prime minister within 24 hours after the platform was opened on August 26.
So, let's wait for this Friday to know whether your suggestions have been well-received by the government.