Guidelines launched to help online businesses on the ABCs of licensing

Ng (centre) looking at a local council’s online platform after launching the online business registration and licensing guidelines in Shah Alam.

SELANGOR has become the first state in Malaysia to establish guidelines for licensing and registration of online businesses.

State local government committee chairman Ng Sze Han said the main purpose of setting up the guidelines was to help home-based online businesses flourish.

“Prior to this, the response was less encouraging because it had not been officially announced.

“Previously, local councils in the state had received many inquiries and complaints from traders who had applied for a licence for their online businesses, but were told it could not be issued.

“With these guidelines, they can now get a licence and their business will grow because they are a legal entity and consumers will also be more confident (in dealing with them),” Ng said after launching the online business registration and licensing guidelines for Selangor at the state secretariat building in Shah Alam.

The event also saw the awarding of certificates of appreciation to 12 online business owners who registered and applied for online business licences with the 12 local councils in Selangor.

Also present were Petaling Jaya mayor Mohamad Azhan Md Azmir and Selangor deputy secretary (development) Datuk Johary Anuar.

The guidelines would ensure control over business activities, particularly in residential areas.

In his speech, Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Amirudin Shari said a discussion was held in 2019 between Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) and Companies Commission of Malaysia (SSM) where it was stated that there were 41,148 online businesses registered in Selangor.

“We hope SSM can share data with local councils in Selangor for us to compare with the data we have.

“In addition, a series of workshops were held in 2019 and 2020 to discuss the proposal to establish guidelines for online business registration and licensing, which was attended by all local authorities in Selangor.

“Officers involved in the workshop were from the state Economic Planning Unit as well as local authority personnel from city planning, law, licensing and enforcement departments,” said Amirudin. His speech was read out by Ng.

According to the Journal of Global Business and Social Entrepreneurship in 2013, Amirudin said changes that occurred in the field of technology had altered the business environment, where employees could now just work from home.

While the state government had waived the fee for online businesses last year, he said this year, a minimum annual charge of RM100 would be imposed.

Since the guidelines came into force on Jan 1 last year, the state government had received a total of 110 online business registrations in 2022 and 27 licence applications so far this year.

A total of 14 applications were considered and approved this year, while the remaining 13 are still undergoing review.

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