October 5, 2018
Carrying a large burden with a lot of debt and worried that you may be unable to pay it off? Or are you looking to secure a new loan? AKPK can help you manage all of your debts and, offer you financial advice for free! Find out more about their services below.
Agensi Kaunselling dan Pengurusan Kredit (AKPK), or the Credit Counselling and Debt Management Agency, was established by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) as part of a Consumer Protection Framework under BNM’s 10-year Financial Sector Master Plan.
In conjunction with AKPK’s 10 year anniversary, Encik Azaddin Ngah Tasir, CEO of AKPK, pointed out that most of the debts by Malaysians are incurred from credit cards and personal loans. He also shared that the main reason Malaysians find themselves in debt is mostly due to poor financial planning.
The largest and main group with the most debt problems are people aged between 30-50 years old and people within the income group of below-RM4,000. 70% of the debt problems that make people reach out to AKPK stems from overwhelming credit card debts.
However, Azaddin says, “If you take advantage of the promotions offered, credit cards can be useful. For example, when you dine out, rather than paying cash, you can get 50% when you use a credit card. If we take advantage of the promotions offered and pay the amount due on time, having a credit card shouldn’t be an issue.”
As of 31 March 2016, 418,941 individuals have attended counselling at AKPK and 148,830 have applied to enroll for the Debt Management Program (DMP). Up until now, there have been a total of 9,937 successful cases of individuals who have paid off their debts under the DMP since its inception in 2000.
Although AKPK was originally known for their debt management services, they are also providing services for three categories; financial education, financial counselling sessions, and debt management program to Malaysians. All of these services are available for FREE.
As a word of caution: If you are approached by any parties claiming to be “third-party agents of AKPK”, do not engage nor solicit any advice from them. AKPK does not charge fees for consultancy services nor do they have any agents.
Under this program, AKPK will develop a personalised debt repayment plan for individuals who are unable to manage their monthly repayments to banks. An individual will have a one-to-one session with an AKPK officer where they will calculate their financial commitments, and then proceed to work out a restructuring plan. A plan usually takes between 8 to 10 years to complete.
AKPK will negotiate with banks on behalf of borrowers, and upon agreement from both the borrower and the bank, a DMP confirmation letter will be issued by AKPK.
Basic requirements for you to enroll to the DMP program are:
To apply for this program, first fill up the online application form for the Debt Management Program. After that, you can proceed to set up an appointment at the nearest AKPK branch to you. Prepare the documents you need to bring and attend the counselling session. Keep in mind that AKPK does not deal with hire purchase loans or housing loans under the DMP, and while enrolled in the program, you will not be able to undertake any credit facilities from banks.
AKPK has seen an increase of about 20% this year of people seeking financial counselling from them since the economic slowdown. Malaysians can receive counselling and advice on managing their debt from AKPK who will help them to identify and clarify options that are available to improve their financial situation.
The counselling and advice sessions are on a one-to-one basis. One can get advice on budgeting, credit related issues, and money management. You don’t have to make an appointment for the counselling sessions, but do take note of the counselling schedule below:
In line with AKPK’s aim to improve financial knowledge of Malaysians, they carry out consumer education programs, workshops, seminars and roadshows. AKPK also provides financial education based on the different scenarios that people will face through different life stages. Moving forward, AKPK is looking to focus on educating Gen Y’s and Gen Z’s to increase their financial literacy.
Check out AKPK’s learning center where you can find financial information catering to varied target audiences such as fresh graduates, those starting a family, individuals preparing for retirement, and more. AKPK also publishes easy to read financial guide books in English, Malay, Mandarin, and Tamil to increase one’s financial literacy. The publications can be bought for a minimal fee at AKPK’s branches.
AKPK has a total of 11 branches and 26 counselling offices across Malaysia, to find the nearest to you click here or you can call the AKPK Infoline at 1-800-88-2575.