GEORGE TOWN: The Malaysian federal government has received full sponsorship of RM30 million (US$7.54 million) from private companies to broadcast the 2018 World Cup football matches on Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM), the nation’s public broadcaster.

Speaking to reporters on Sunday (Jun 3), Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the federal government will not have to spend a single cent to broadcast the matches.

“We have already obtained sponsorship from private companies totalling RM30 million and they will be able to get their returns by having their advertisements aired during the broadcast of the World Cup matches.

“In addition, every viewer will also be able to save at least RM100 because if we want to see the matches (on satellite television channel) we have to pay about RM100,” he added.

Lim said the ministry had been deluged with criticism when the government announced its intention to broadcast the 2018 World Cup matches, which costs RM30 million. 

The announcement happened at the same time the government also launched a donation drive through the Tabung Harapan or Hope Fund.

“We received criticisms on why we are spending money on the football matches, yet at the same time we also launched the Tabung Harapan, which we have explained before but perhaps not very clear, which is, even though we spend RM30 million, we will get back RM30 million in the form of advertisements from private companies,” he said.

RTM will be broadcasting 27 matches “LIVE” and 14 delayed throughout the month-long tournament.

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