PETALING JAYA: The government will now allow a special Employees Provident Fund(EPF) withdrawal of RM10,000, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

He said that further details on the scheme will be announced by the Finance Ministry,and added that this comes after requests from various parties.

“This is a tough decision because it involves the retirement savings of the people. This special withdrawal is a middle path to balance out the pressing needs of today and the future savings," said Ismail Sabri in a special press conference on Wednesday (March 16).

He said research and thorough scrutiny on the country’s Covid-19 recovery phase pointed out that there are still people who have been affected economically, lost their income and are trying to rebuild their lives.

“The government has heard, researched and looked into the requests of several parties who wanted to withdraw from their EPF savings,” he said.

However, he appealed to EPF contributors to ensure that they still had some savings left in their account for rainy days, although the government has given the nod for the withdrawal.

“I hope contributors will weigh in on the necessary considerations before making the withdrawals for their future,” he said.

Ismail Sabri said a total of RM101bil was withdrawn by 7.34 million EPF contributors through the i-Lestari, i-Sinar and i-Citra schemes since the Covid-19 pandemic hit Malaysia two years ago.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz said in a statement following the announcement that the EPF will make an announcement on the details for withdrawal in the near future.

“The EPF will also announce the measures needed to overcome the issue of depleting savings of EPF contributors,” he said.