Monday, 2 July 2012

Kontraktor: 'Bank Negara musnahkan kami'

Sebuah firma pembinaan mendakwa Bank Negara memaksanya muflis untuk mengelak daripada menanggung kos untuk pembinaan Pusat Sumber Perkhidmatan Kewangan (FSRC).

Kontraktor kejuruteraan dan pembinaan itu, H&I Niaga Sdn Bhd mendakwa tindakan Bank Negara yang enggan membayar kos berkenaan menyebabkan syarikat tersebut kini mengalami masalah.

Syarikat itu juga mendakwa telah menandatangani satu perjanjian tambahan yang "berat sebelah" dengan Bank Negara pada September 2009.

Dalam satu sidang media di ibu pejabat DAP hari ini, MP Petaling Jaya Utara Tony Pua mendakwa Bank Negara enggan membuat bayaran kepada syarikat tersebut hingga H&I muflis supaya perkara itu dapat disembunyikan.

Pua berkata, tindakan tersebut menyebabkan syarikat berkenaan tidak dapat membayar hutang yang ditanggungnya.

Turut hadir dalam sidang media tersebut ialah pengarah urusan H&I Niaga Ismail Mohd Hisham dam pengarah eksekutif syarikat tersebut Amerudin Ismail.

RM667 BILLION! M'sian households DROWNING IN LOANS

PETALING JAYA - The rise in household debts – which now stand at around RM667 billion – can lead to more bankruptcy cases as consumers are unable to repay loans, especially during times of economic stress.
Insolvency Department deputy director-general Haini Hassan said the top reasons for household debts, namely housing, personal and hire purchase loans, correlated with the top three reasons for consumer bankruptcy.
"The order is slightly different but the top three reasons are exactly the same; it shows a correlation between household debts and bankruptcy.
"For household debts, according to Bank Negara, housing loans make up the top cause, followed by car and personal loans, whereas in bankruptcies, car loans top the list, followed by personal and housing loans," she said in an interview with theSun.
A total of 19,167 bankruptcy cases were registered by the department last year, up from 13,855 cases in 2008.
Bank Negara in its annual report for 2011 stated that household debts to gross domestic product (GDP) ratio was 75.8%, up from 69% in 2006. Based on the revised GDP figure of RM881 billion, this roughly amounts to RM667 billion.
Of that figure, 45% of all household debts, or around RM300 billion, were in residential property loans alone.
While acknowledging that high household debt level is a cause for concern, Malaysian Rating Corporation Bhd chief economist Nor Zahidi Alias told theSun that it will only really start to affect economic growth if the ratio reached a level of 85% of GDP.
"It is not surprising to see that household debts correlate directly with consumer bankruptcy cases.
"The higher the debt level, the more likelihood of the debtor not being able to repay the debt," he said.
Nor Zahidi warned that Malaysia is at the level where it should be more cautious about the household debt problem.
"As we have seen from past experience, high household debt level can lead to a collapse in consumer sector as happened in South Korea in 2003.
"For that reason, Bank Negara has been cautious and introduced prudent guidelines for lending in January this year to ensure that the problem can be contained in the next few years," he said.
Among the measures put in place included tighter lending guidelines for banks, including using net income calculation method instead of gross income when computing the debt-service ratio for potential borrowers.
The number of bankruptcy cases in Malaysia has shown an increasing trend for the past few years.
Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz told Parliament on June 14 that between 2005 and April this year, the Insolvency Department saw 116,379 people being declared bankrupt.
Besides the three reasons for bankruptcy, social and corporate guarantors as well as business loans and credit card debts made up the other major causes of bankruptcy.
Haini said the reasons for the increase in bankruptcy cases were varied.
"Sometimes there is mismanagement of funds, but with the recession, there has been loss of employment or the effects of recession that weren't foreseen.
"The effects of recession only start to show after a year or so," she said, adding that it was the lower income group who would be most vulnerable.
Haini advised people to always spend within their means, and set aside savings before thinking about spending or taking out loans.
"The important thing is to work with your disposable income figure in mind, not your gross income, as that can be misleading because there are financial obligations," she said.
Haini also urged people who genuinely cannot service their loans to come forward as there is better protection for registered bankrupts under the law.
Once a bankrupt under the law, the Insolvency Department becomes the bankrupt's trustee and facilitates payment to the creditors, meaning the debtor cannot be harassed, she said.