KOTA KINABALU: The government is ready to assist small and medium enterprises (SMEs) including micro entrepreneurs in restarting their business activities to ensure that the country is on track to achieve its economic recovery target next year.
Senior Minister and International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said the ministry, together with the Malaysia External Trade Development Corp, SIRIM Bhd and the Malaysia Automotive, Robotics and IoT Institute is ready to assist industries such as food and beverage, animal husbandry and automotive so that they would be able to contribute to the country’s gross domestic product.
“We need these sectors to resume their activities because we want the nation’s economy to recover by next year, and right now we are on the right track towards ensuring that the target can be achieved.
“Bank Negara has announced that the (economic) growth is a little slow this year but if we are able to recover by 2021, international bodies such as the World Bank have said that Malaysia would be one of the earliest countries to record positive economic growth of between 6.3% and 7.5%, ” he said.
Azmin said this to reporters after his meeting with bumiputra entrepreneurs in conjunction with his working visit to Sabah.
He said the meeting was held to discuss the challenges faced by the SMEs in resuming their business activities after the implementation of the movement control order in March.
The minister said the reopening of the economic sectors that started in May managed to reduce the unemployment rate from about 860,000 to 773,000 in June.
“As such, I hope the SMEs and the micro enterprises will resume their business activities as soon as possible, and the ministry will assist via several initiatives to boost the SMEs’ productivity, ” he added.
Meanwhile, Azmin said in a statement that the International Trade and Industry Ministry (Miti) and its agencies would continue to ensure dynamic growth for bumiputra SMEs in Sabah involved in the manufacturing sector.
Industries owned by women also have prospects to enhance Sabah’s economic growth.
He said Miti would assist in providing facilitation in the form of capacity building, tax reduction incentive for automation, as well as business matching programme with foreign importers.
Azmin, who led a Miti delegation to Sabah, met some 100 participants comprising SMEs in various sectors, including food and beverage, agriculture, automotive, oil and gas, and tourism. — Bernama
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