LESS than 40% of the small and medium enterprises (SME) in Johor are owned by women, says Mohd Hairi Mad Shah.
The Johor youth, sports, entrepreneur development, cooperatives and human resources committee chairman said only 38.5% or 16,256 of the 42,221 entrepreneurs registered with the Johor Entrepreneurs Data Centre system (Padu) were women.
“However, the data does not include those working in the informal sector, which is defined as businesses that are not registered with the Companies Commission of Malaysia or local councils and have less than 10 workers.
“According to the Statistics Department, Johor had 133,655 individuals working in the informal and micro sectors in 2021.
“The state ranked third after Selangor, which had 271,944 such individuals, and Kuala Lumpur with 146,256.
“I believe the figures would have risen since then as the economy has improved following the Covid-19 pandemic,” he told the state legislative assembly at Kota Iskandar during the oral question session.
He was answering a query from Fauziah Misri (BN-Penawar) about the state’s plans to create a snack production hub for women entrepreneurs to increase their income.
“The state government hopes to upgrade the existing SME hubs in each district to accommodate more products from women entrepreneurs, including single mothers and those from the B40 category,” said Mohd Hairi.
“In order to realise this plan, I will form a committee that involves the district office, local councils and other related agencies such as the Agriculture Department and Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority by early next year,” he said.