Yeoh calls for more coordination between ministries on sports funding

Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh (centre) speaks to national cyclists Nurul Aliana Syafika Azizan (right) and Anis Amira Rosidi in Nilai

New Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh reckons that cross-ministry involvement and cabinet cooperation are needed to get more corporations involved in sports funding. Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president Tan Sri Norza Zakaria had earlier called for a revamp of the annual fund allocation system and the introduction of the Sports Unity Tax, where contributions from private companies or individuals to sports will get increased tax exemption or incentives. Many National Sports Associations (NSAs) depend on handouts from companies via their corporate social responsibility (CSR) programmes. Yeoh said government funding is always limited and she welcomes corporate contributions such as the RM2.7 million from Yayasan Sime Darby (YSD) to the YSD Track series (YSDTS). “Ministries can’t be working individually, we need more coordination between ministries. “For example if we want to bring tourists to Malaysia, it’s not only the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (Motac) which is involved. There’s involvement with the federal, state government and local governments. “This is why, I think, to make sports successful, we need the involvement of all. We need to consult and coordinate, sometimes the lack of coordination can sometimes frustrate. “Only YSD alone is not enough… we need to talk to the Ministry of Finance and bring all the partners together when it comes to tax reliefs. “I believe it’s the role of ministers to coordinate, bring it to the cabinet table and coordinate with other colleagues… I hope we can get it done.” Yeoh added that she will have a town hall meeting with national athletes to get to the pulse of Malaysian sports. “In the coming weeks, I will be having town hall meetings with athletes, stakeholders and NSAs. I have been meeting with Sports Ministry agencies to understand what’s going on,” she said.

Courtesy from – New Straits Times