KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 12 — Microsoft Malaysia sees the education sector as having received the lion’s share of allocations in Budget 2020 at RM64 billion and aimed at developing future-ready local talent, while empowering education, skill and talent development to provide a solid foundation for the country’s economy.
It said a key step was the allocation of RM11 million in the budget towards initiatives by the Ministry of Education to encourage more students to engage in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education and democratise it to develop the future-ready Malaysian Talent.
“Furthermore, in line with the ‘zero reject’ policy of the Education Ministry, the budget, tabled yesterday by the Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng also allocated RM23 million towards making school facilities disabled friendly to ensure no child is denied an education due to his or her disability.
“We continue to see technology’s role as an enabler, bridging the opportunity divide, and allowing people with disabilities to participate in the digital economy,” Microsoft Malaysia managing director, K Raman said in a statement here, today.
Microsoft also noted that the Malaysian government had taken the lead in setting an aim of hiring at least one per cent of people with disabilities in the civil service, and it all began with providing the student with adequate tools and knowledge to contribute back to the nation.
“As part of today’s digital world, all of us have the responsibility to learn, unlearn and relearn, as we work to become a Digital Nation, digital by default, transformational and secure by design.
“As Malaysia makes it education system more inclusive, it offers an unique opportunity for digital skills to be democratised,” Raman said.
Budget 2020 also came out in strong support of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to help them innovate and be at the forefront of development in the digital era.
According to Raman, the allocation encourages SMEs to upgrade their digital operations, facilitates access to financing and capacity-building in line with the fourth industrial revolution (IR4.0).
“The government will continue funding the training of micro-digital entrepreneurs and technologists and grow local digital content creators and champions, especially in e-Games, animation and digital arts,” he said.
He also said it was extremely encouraging that the National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan would adopt the public-private partnership approach and called on the private sector to join hands in digitisation efforts.
“Malaysia is poised to be a digital-first economy with a robust digital and social infrastructure that works towards bridging the opportunity divide in our journey to become a high-income nation.
“The core measures undertaken in the budget will help further fuel the digital economy, drive growth for SMEs and enterprises, enhance workforce skills development as well as education access for all,” Raman added. — Bernama