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Malaysia proposes USD3.9 billion defence budget for 2022

The Malaysian government has proposed a 2022 defence budget of MYR16.14 billion (USD3.9 billion). The allocation represents a 1.8% increase over the original allocation in 2021 of MYR15.86 billion.

The defence budget for 2022 was tabled before parliament on 29 October. The allocation, which amounts to 5% of national government expenditure for the year, comprises MYR11.10 billion for operations expenses and MYR5.04 billion for development expenses. These represent a year-on-year decline of 2% and an increase of 12% respectively.

Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said a focus of the defence budget would be to “upgrade the infrastructure” of the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF). Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Aziz added in his budget speech that a priority will also be replacing equipment used by the MAF's special operations forces.

Budget documents issued by the Ministry of Finance (MoF) show that about 71% of the operations expenses will be spent on salaries, with most of the remainder allocated to services and supplies.

The development expenditure comprises MYR497 million for services and supplies, a fall of 76%, but an 87% increase – to MYR4.54 billion – on assets. From the development expenditure, the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) will receive 34%, while the Malaysian Army and Royal Malaysian Navy have been allocated 26% and 23% respectively.

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