Take note, parents! If your children are enrolled in primary school this year, they may be eligible for a RM500 savings incentive being offered by the government.
Announced during the 2018 Budget tabled by PM Najib Razak last year, RM250 million was allocated for the Insentif Geran Sepadan Percuma RM500 (GS500) under the newly-rebranded Skim Simpanan Pendidikan 1Malaysia (SSPN1M), which was previously known as the Skim Simpanan Pendidikan Nasional (SSPN).
The savings scheme is meant to help students finance their tertiary education when they reach college or university age.
From 1 January to 31 December 2018, the government will give a one-off RM500 to 500,000 Malaysian students aged seven to 12 years old, provided they open an SSPN1M account with a minimum deposit of RM500
Parents or guardians are required to make an initial deposit of RM500 when opening a new SSPN1M account for the child or dependent for them to be eligible for the incentive. You can open a SSPM1M account online via the PTPTN website or at designated banks.
Students in that age bracket with existing SSPN (now SSPN1M) accounts are also eligible for the incentive, as long as they have at least RM500 total net savings in their individual accounts.
Parents do not need to apply separately to get the incentive, as the RM500 will be automatically deposited within a month after an account achieves RM500 in net savings
As per the allocated RM250 million, the incentive is only available for the first 500,000 students to fulfill the aforementioned requirements.
Here is the full list of requirements to be eligible for the GS500 incentive:
(i) Student must be seven to 12 years old or still enrolled in primary school in 2018.
(ii) Student's parent(s) or guardian(s) must be of Malaysian citizenship.
(iii) The incentive is only eligible if a student opens a new SSPN1M account or made deposits to their existing SSPN account from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2018.
(iv) Account holder must have a net savings of at least RM500 throughout 2018 (not including takaful contributions for SSPN1M-i Plus).
(v) A recipient can only receive the GS500 incentive once, which will be deposited in the following month after their total savings reaches RM500.
(vi) The GS500 incentive can only be withdrawn when the recipient turns 18.
More information on GS500 can be found this comprehensive FAQ on the PTPTN website. Happy saving!