Johor sets up SERC, digital bank to boost economy post-Covid-19


THE Johor state government will establish a State Economic Reform Committee (SERC) to facilitate economic reforms and recovery post Covid-19.

Mentri Besar Datuk Ir Hasni Mohammad (picture) said the advisory committee — comprising influential individuals as well as industry leaders — will hold a meeting next week to evaluate current economic challenges and identify the way forward for the state’s economy.

“The SERC will make its recommendations through an economic reform plan which will include short-, medium- and long-term policies, procedures and strategic directions towards reforming Johor’s economy post-Covid-19,” said Hasni, who is also the chairman of the committee, in a statement yesterday.

He added that the committee will also advise the state government on new economic areas, regional cooperation and high impact initiatives to create a sustainable Johor economic ecosystem, while recommending improvements to the Johor Sustainable Development Plan 2019-2030 in the post-Covid-19 context.

Hasni said the economic reform plan will be submitted to him for further action by state government agencies such as the State Economic Planning Unit and related agencies.

Aside from the SERC, the state government will also set up a digital bank to boost its digital economy.

Hasni said the digital bank will make the financial sector more inclusive and capable of providing better quality financial services and accountability for all market segments.

“Digital banking, particularly in the areas of financial technology, is growing rapidly. In 2014, 52% of the South-East Asian population used online banking services and the number is increasing.

“As such, Johor should seize this opportunity as the digital economy is part of the ‘new norm’ post-Covid-19, and I am confident that Johor has the capability and expertise to do it,” he said.

Hasni revealed that the state government plans to review the Singapore-Johor-Indonesia Triangle of Growth.