More MSMEs to be involved in digital economy in Malaysia in next five years, says Economic Planning Unit director

A bird's-eye view of Kuala Lumpur July 8, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara
A bird's-eye view of Kuala Lumpur July 8, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara

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KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 14 — The government expects more micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to be involved in the digital economy in the next five years, driven by continued efforts to support this group under the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP).

Director of the K-Economy division in the Economic Planning Unit of the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Suhana Md Saleh said the Covid-19 pandemic has shown that there are gaps in the country’s economic structure, especially among MSMEs.

“The MSME sector is the backbone of the national economy. About 97.2 per cent of the businesses registered in the country are MSMEs. Definitely, a lot of focus will be given (in the 12MP due to be tabled on Sept 27) to support this group,” she said on RTM’s Biz Malaysia Programme today. “We are also aware that these MSMEs are still less competitive due to the low adoption of technology, lack of skilled talent and limited access to funding.”

Therefore, she said the government’s focus will be on MSMEs to enhance the ability of this group to compete in the digital economy.

Under the Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint, the government has targeted 875,000 MSMEs to adopt e-Commerce, she revealed.

“Most of the MSMEs have low adoption of the digital economy, due to, amongst others, reasons such as lack of awareness, high cost of adoption and lack of skills related to the use of digital technology,” she said.

“Following the Covid-19 pandemic, we have also found that the use of digital technology has become a necessity and is no longer an option. Citizens and businesses have had to turn to online activities, which have become part of the new normal. This transition is important to ensure the sustainability of economic activities and daily life,” she said, adding that businesses today have made extensive use of digital marketing techniques and e-commerce platforms to increase market reach. — Bernama

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