Some BND124.52 million have been allocated to address the COVID-19 pandemic, including increasing vaccine supply, improving BruHealth app, procuring medical equipment, purchase of antigen rapid test (ART) kits, essential items in isolation centres, laboratories and allowances for frontliners.
Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah said this during the deliberation of the proposed 2022/2023 budget yesterday at the 18th Legislative Council (LegCo) session.
According to the proposed budget, BND55 million are for the procurement of medicines and BND41.5 million for medical supplies and services; BND1.9 million for the construction of a new block at Jubli Perak Health Centre in Sengkurong and new emergency services building at Suri Seri Begawan Hospital in Kuala Belait with the project cost of BND5.6 million; BND30 million for medical treatments at Jerudong Park Medical Centre (JPMC), The Brunei Cancer Centre and Brunei Neuroscience, Stroke and Rehabilitation Centre.
The proposed budget is themed ‘Strengthening Public Welfare Towards a More Resilient Socio-Economy’ with four priorities – preserving public welfare; ensuring food security; support and assist private sector to resilient and grow; and improving human resource competencies towards work and future-readiness.
The minister said, “The theme is designed to make sure that efforts and plans carried out will continue and be expanded to strengthen the socio-economic resilience of the Sultanate to become sustainable and inclusive by leveraging competitive advantages and innovative technologies. This includes increasing the productivity of micro, small and medium enterprises and generating employment opportunities for locals.”
On preserving public welfare, Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew said, “The government will continue to support the economic recovery of the nation affected by COVID-19 pandemic. This includes giving priority to comprehensive public healthcare.”