The Borneo Post
Sarawak, federal govts to continue helping SMEs
KUCHING: The Sarawak and federal governments will continue to offer various programmes and loans for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to boost the economy.
Assistant Minister of Entrepreneur and SME Development Datuk Mohd Naroden Majais said SMEs make up 98 per cent of the country’s business sector, contributing 51 per cent to Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP).
“We shall focus on the development of the service industry and SME to bring our economy to a new height. Look at Singapore which has no land for agriculture, it relies much on its service sector to generate revenue.
“So do Hong Kong and Taiwan whose service industry has spurred the economy, and their infrastructure development is more advanced than ours,” he said when representing Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Industrial and Entrepreneur Development Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan at the launch of the National Institute of Entrepreneurship (INSKEN) Business Coaching (IBC) Sarawak Edition 2019 at a hotel here yesterday.
Naroden, who is also Assistant Minister of E-Commerce, urged SMEs in rural areas to strive to meet the demand of urban folk
We shall focus on the development of the service industry and SME to bring our economy to a new height. Look at Singapore which has no land for agriculture, it relies much on its service sector to generate revenue. — Datuk Mohd Naroden Majais, Assistant Minister of Entrepreneur and SME Development
who could afford their products and services.
According to him, the purchasing power among the urban community is higher than their counterparts in rural areas given the higher salaries offered in urban cities and towns.
“What people living in the cities and towns eat such as fruits and vegetables all come from the rural areas. Some of them may even need homestay programme during the holidays.
“This is where opportunities arise for the SMEs in rural areas. Offer what the urban folk need as a way to explore and expand your businesses,” he said.
Naroden also called on rural SMEs to work with various government agencies to improve their business performance.
With the Pan Borneo Highway and Coastal Road projects underway, he said the rural community will enjoy better road connectivity in the near future which should help them in conducting their businesses.
He reminded the rural community that the Sarawak government is also implementing digital economy and providing better telecommunication services across Sarawak.
“We must embrace technology and use the Internet to expand your network and market. Your clients can be from any corner of the globe for it is now a borderless world,” he stressed.
On top of that, Naroden said the government is offering various types of loans and grants such as for housewives and youths to venture into entrepreneurship.
He added that the government even has special loans and grants for the bumiputera community, a policy which was not practised in other countries.
Among those present was INSKEN chief executive officer Muhd Firdaus Azharuddin.