Alibaba eases SME to join global trade

By SHAZNI ONG / Pic By BLOOMBERG

E-Commerce giant Alibaba is committed to lower trade barriers that would enable local small and medium enterprise (SME) to participate in the global trade via the Global Buy, Global Sell concept.

Alibaba.com GM Yu Yong said the company is also simplifying international trade by lowering the cost of purchase for local SME, while further streamlining the process from product search to the completion of transaction as a leading wholesale marketplace for global trade.

He said the result could be seen during the #SuperSeptember Online Expo that was held recently on Alibaba.com, with Malaysian merchants reporting a double-digit increase in sales and receiving inquiries from global buyers.

“Local merchants managed to increase inquiries by 21% and their ability to convert visitors to active buyers also increased by 15%,” Yu said, addressing participants at the company’s Global Trading Conference yesterday.

The Alibaba’s global #SuperSeptember Online Expo, held recently between Sept 4 and Sept 30, was aimed at lowering trade barriers for SME in Malaysia, while helping them generate more business opportunities as well as enabling the expansion of businesses in a safe and cost-effective environment.

Yu added that Alibaba.com is projecting to increase the number of Malaysian suppliers to more than 2,000 by year-end from the currently active 1,500 names.

“#SuperSeptember is yet another initiative taken by Alibaba.com to better connect global buyers with high quality Malaysian suppliers.

“Our vision is to provide an end-to-end online trading solution where local SME are enabled to play a major role in cross-border trade and bring Global Buy, Global Sell to life,” Yu said.

He said Malaysian industries that have shown the biggest growth potential in the areas of cross-border trade are food and beverages products; beauty and personal care products; furniture, home and garden products, as well as rubber and plastic products — all of which had seen impressive increases in inquiries and exports during the campaign period.

Meanwhile, Alibaba International business unit Chinese supplier director Jaycee Lam said Alibaba.com has so far managed to help boost the exports of local SME from 0% to 55%, thanks to the the optimisation process of its one-stop trading services.

“Local merchants are able to reduce a significant amount of tie on its export customs declaration, from seven days to just one working day.

“Merchants can also benefit from savings of about 1% to 2% in foreign-exchange rates, as well as a 30% reduction in logistic cost,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the conference.

Alibaba also plans to launch its trade confidence and guarantee of transaction programmes to help attract more global buyers towards Malaysian suppliers.

Trade confidence is a free order protection service, which is designed to help create trust between buyers and suppliers, and covers buyers in the event of payment, shipping and product quality-related disputes.