Digital economy expected to show significant growth

Yasmin: The top challenges in digital readiness in key industries are the lack of structured approach, unavailable or no prioritised budget and a lack of digitally skilled workforce.

KUALA LUMPUR: The digital transformation impact on the economy is expected to significantly increase by RM400bil by 2025, said Malaysia Digital Economy Corp (MDEC) CEO Datuk Yasmin Mahmood (pic).

In 2016, the digital economy contribution to Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP) was 18.2%.

According to the Department of Statistics, the nation’s economy in 2016 had a GDP growth of 4.2% with a value of RM1,107.9bil at constant prices and RM1,229.4bil at current prices.

This means that the digital economy contribution in 2016 was RM201.6bil at constant prices and RM223.8bil at current prices.

“The top challenges in digital readiness of Malaysian key industries are the lack of structured approach, unavailable or no prioritised budget, lack of digitally skilled workforce, and a perception that digital transformation is too fast paced and complex,” said Yasmin, who was speaking at the launch of the Digital Transformation Acceleration Programme (DTAP) yesterday.

The DTAP, a strategic partnership initiative between Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) and MDEC in spearheading the nation’s digital agenda, also offers an outcome based matching grant for the establishment of pilot phase.

Established for large corporations and mid-tier companies, DTAP will provide Malaysian companies a structured approach to digital transformation and will leverage on Digital Transformation Labs’ expertise to help businesses adopt emerging digital technologies.

KPJ Healthcare Bhd president and managing director Datuk Amiruddin Abdul Satar, who was speaking during the panel session titled “Digital Transformation: Walk the Talk”, said KPJ was one of the early adopters of healthcare digital transformation in Malaysia, with a cloud storage system in place to automate its information system for the past five years.

“With healthcare being one of the laggards in the adoption of Industry 4.0, healthcare players or hospital operators like KPJ need to start looking at how to automate and innovate our processes - we need that in order to protect our business.

“As a move to facilitate doctors’ decision making, we are the first hospital to adopt IBM Watson for Oncology cognitive computing system to provide doctors access to a wealth of information.

“Now, the journey is about how we digitise and analyse all our data to improve our services,” said Amiruddin, who added that KPJ has the fundamental platform in place to move in that direction.

In the pilot phase of DTAP, businesses will leverage on the expertise of the Digital Transformation Labs to identify pain points and opportunities in the digital space, uncover potential solution and implement proof of concept or minimum viable product with measurable outcomes.

Upon successful completion of the pilot phase, between six months to one year period, businesses can apply to undergo for full-scale implementation.

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