Youth entrepreneurs get a boost


Zafira (left), who was running a stall selling breakfast items, will soon be operating a kiosk near Putra Mosque, courtesy of PjC.

YOUNG entrepreneurs in Putrajaya who plan to start their own business will get 10 new kiosks to rent this month. In conjunction with the Federal Territory Day celebrations last month, Putrajaya Corporation (PjC) added six kiosks in the Precinct 9 food court and four more at Souq in Precinct 1.

The initiative is part of the Young City Entrepreneurs programme by Federal Territories Ministry and PjC to encourage youths to start their own businesses when the Covid-19 pandemic started in 2020 and many were struggling to get a job.

So far, there are 105 trading lots offered under the programme in Putrajaya, out of which, five are kiosks.

PjC corporate communication director Norzita Abdul Razak said response to the programme had been encouraging.

She said the opportunity was given to youths between the ages of 18 and 35 who have lost their jobs or had their businesses affected because of the pandemic.

“We hope the budding entrepreneurs will use the kiosks to open franchises that do not require much capital investment.

“Ten more kiosks are expected to be completed by the end of the year, while another 16 kiosks are expected by the end of next year.Farhan (right) manning his kiosk at the Precinct 9 food court in Putrajaya.Farhan (right) manning his kiosk at the Precinct 9 food court in Putrajaya.

“Our target is to offer 161 trading lots by next year,” she said.

One of the youths operating at a new kiosk in Precinct 9 is Mohammad Farhan Mohd Sobri, 32.

The former bank employee resigned from his marketing position in July last year because he could not meet the targets set by the employer.

“Marketing during the pandemic was difficult and I was continuously not meeting my monthly targets.

“I was underperforming and resigned voluntarily, hoping to get a new job.

“I had always thought about running my own business and looked for such opportunities after I quit my job.

“That was when I came to know about the Takoyakibro franchise.

“I became a franchisee and started the business with a stall and an umbrella near the Precinct 9 food court last July under the free trade programme by the ministry.

“It is good to start off as a franchisee because I do not have any knowledge about running a business and will be able to learn under the guidance of the franchise holder, before I decide to embark on something on my own,” he elaborated.

He said his takoyaki business was doing fairly well and that he was earning more than when he worked at the bank.

“I employ two workers to help me run the kiosk.

“Daily operations are much better now.

“At the kiosk, the business area is much more organised and comfortable.

“When I was operating under an umbrella, we did not have a proper place to put our things,” he added.

Another entrepreneur is Nur Zafira Sofiah Md Johan, 30.

She and her sister took the opportunity offered by the free trade programme and started a breakfast stall at Precinct 15 in December 2020.

The kindergarten administrative assistant said the duo decided to supplement their income after seeing pay cuts.

“We also had flexible working hours which enabled us to run the breakfast stall before going to work.

“We stopped operating our stall in December last year and applied for a kiosk.

“PjC has told me that I will be given one near Putra Mosque.

“Since the mosque is a tourist attraction, my sister and I are thinking that we may sell light snacks like rojak and pau,” she added.

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