Mustapa: DFTZ, NESR to boost e-commerce contribution to GDP

  • Economy Premium
  • Wednesday, 26 Jul 2017

Mustapa: "We are aware that congressional leaders appear not too keen to bring the bill forward during the lame duck session. The fate of the TPPA will therefore depend on whether the new US Presidency will ratify the agreement.

KUALA LUMPUR: Government interventions, with the recent launch of Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) and National e-Commerce Strategic Roadmap (NeSR) initiatives, will boost e-commerce's contribution to Malaysia's gross domestic product (GDP), said International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.  

He said that with the two initiatives, coupled with efforts to drive the national digital economy agenda, the e-commerce contribution to GDP was expected to hit 9% to 10% by 2020.

"E-commerce will contribute significantly to our digital economy. In 2015, its share of the nation's GDP was around 5.4%, and if we do nothing or business as usual, it might just reach 6.4% by 2020," he told reporters on the sidelines of the National eCommerce Forum organised by Miti in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday.

Mustapa, who is also the chair of the National eCommerce Council, said the council had initiated various activities and events to spearhead the development of e-commerce in Malaysia, aimed at almost doubling its growth from 11% currently to 20% by 2020.

The National eCommerce Forum was attended by more than 1,000 participants with 50 exhibitors from various e-commerce segments, including e-marketplaces (such as Lazada and AgroBazaar Online); payment solutions (MOLPay and IPay88); logistics providers (Pos Malaysia, GDEX and SkyNet); solution providers (Webshaper and Sitegiant); chambers of commerce and associations; as well as online sellers including small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

Themed “Embracing Digital Transformation”, the half-day forum highlights the Government's efforts to reach out to e-commerce players along the value chain, particularly SMEs, on the importance of embracing digitalisation to sustain their businesses amid the challenging economic environment.

Mustapa, in his welcoming remarks, said SME development would remain the key focus area under the Government's digital transformation agenda.

He said the DFTZ initiative would focus on providing state-of-the-art platform for SMEs and enterprises to conduct their businesses and services.

"This will hopefully help to allay any concerns or scepticism that the trade zone would only benefit foreign players and encourage the entrance of more imported products.

"Instead, the DFTZ will actually focus on helping our SMEs to penetrate the export market and improve our cross-border efficiency," he said.  

At the event, the minister also launched the "Go eCommerce" online platform, a dedicated one-stop business resource centre to guide SMEs in e-commerce adoption.

The platform, residing at domain name, currently houses over 70 online courses and this is expected to grow to at least 200 courses by end-2017.  

"As of today, over 1,100 interested SMEs have registered with GoeCommerce, and I am sure the number will grow significantly in the next few days," Mustapa, who also attended the second pitching session organised by Miti and Malaysia Digital Economy Corp at the forum for local eCommerce start-ups and scale-ups.

The session enabled start-ups and scale-ups to pitch their business ideas directly for the purpose of securing capital funding from government-linked companies, government-linked investment companies, Minister of Finance Inc and venture capitalists.

Commenting on the launch of Bursa Malaysia Bhd's new Leading Entrepreneur Accelerator Platform (LEAP) Market on Tuesday, Mustapa said it was another great initiative from the Government to provide SMEs with an alternative platform to raise capital and the hand-holding services from LEAP's advisers would ensure a pipeline of many SME listings in the country. - Bernama

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