Digitalising to benefit businesses

Teng (second from right) launching the Selangor Business Hub digital platform. Looking on are (from left) Menteri Besar Incorporated chief executive officer Norita Mohd Sidik, Hasan and Selangor Deputy State Secretary Dr Nor Fuad Abdul Hamid.

WITH large-scale and international events as well as conferences unlikely to take place for the foreseeable future, the Selangor government is providing a virtual networking platform for businesses in the state through the Selangor Business Hub (SBH).

The SBH digital platform is expected to provide another channel of communication for businesses to engage and network with stakeholders, especially from the region, amid the movement restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Selangor investment, industry and trade, small and medium industries committee chairman Datuk Teng Chang Khim said the initiative showed that Selangor would always be forward-thinking to ensure SMEs would adapt to the new norms of doing business.

“Selangor is not hibernating and waiting for the crisis to be over.

“We plan to move up the value chain, to lead in finding a way out of the pandemic by using digitalisation as a tool.

“Rest assured that more initiatives dedicated to this cause will be introduced for the benefit of businesses in Selangor, ” he said during the launch of the platform.

He said the restricted movement had “forced” Malaysian companies, including Invest Selangor, to look at and operate differently from the office-based standard operating procedures (SOP).

“We have to accept the reality that the pandemic has created a domino effect on the Asean economy and also the rest of the world.

“Nonetheless, we will continue to facilitate and assist companies in Selangor in these times of uncertainty to keep their presence in the state and restore their confidence, ” Teng added.

Invest Selangor chief executive officer Datuk Hasan Azhari Idris said SBH could also expedite the migration of activities that were usually undertaken physically, into a virtual format.

“One of its advantages is that we can offer programmes and activities beyond official event dates as it is not constrained by space and venues, ” he said.

He added that one example of this was Selangor International Business Summit (SIBS) 2020 which would be held virtually on SBH from Oct 14 to 17.

For now, 300 merchants from 10 countries have signed on, and the state investment company is looking to bring on board 3,000 merchants in a year’s time.

SBH comprises three key components --- the Invest Selangor Investment Promotional Programmes, the Virtual Selangor Business Summit and the Selangor Information Technology and E-Commerce Council (Sitec).

Under the Invest Selangor Investment Promotional Programmes, members can participate in virtual conferences and webinars organised by Invest Selangor as well as virtual meetings with potential partners or investors across the region.

The Virtual Selangor International Business Summit, is an alternative online format of the annual SIBS and comprises the Selangor International Expo, Selangor Asean Business Conference and Selangor Smart City and Digital Economy Convention.

The third component --- Sitec Virtual Hub --- is an information and webinar hub for programmes conducted by Sitec, to expand the reach to the international audience.

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