SMEs need space to regroup to contribute to Malaysia’s GDP

by S BIRRUNTHA / pic by TMR FILE

BANK Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) move to relax lending requirements for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will allow the sector the necessary breathing space before the companies can reposition themselves amid the current tough economic environment.

Entrepreneur Development Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Md Yusof (picture) said, based on the economic climate around the world today, it would be unfair for regulators to put strict rules on struggling SMEs without “a bit of deregulating”.

“At the same time, it must be stressed that SMEs is not the only sector that is going through this rough time. The entire global economy is also facing a challenging time due to the trade war.

“So, we have opened up frontiers and new opportunities for them to thrive and adapt to changing priorities,” he told reporters after delivering a talk at the “3-5 Afternoon Insights” event organised by the Asian Strategy and Leadership Institute in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Mohd Redzuan said such a measure by BNM will give a positive impact to the SME ecosystem.

Moreover, he said the SME sector is expected to contribute about 50% to the nation’s GDP by 2030.

In his speech, Mohd Redzuan said the government has a great interest in entrepreneurship and small business development as potential solutions to boost the nation’s economic growth and reduce unemployment.

“Among the few areas for the government to look into fostering the entrepreneurship ecosystem are overall government policy, regulatory framework and infrastructure, as well as funding and finance,” he said.

As such, he said the National Entrepreneurship Policy 2030 will be a “nucleus” to streamline government initiatives and enhance coordination to realise a better ecosystem.

He added that the government will also need to perform a distinct and noticeable role in realising a better entrepreneurship ecosystem.

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