Since inception, MSC Malaysia has helped to drive the growth of the country’s digital economy
by ANIS HAZIM
THE Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) Malaysia will be renamed Malaysia Digital in response to the constant advancements of digital technology.
Multimedia and Communication Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa said the MSC Malaysia initiatives will be further enhanced after 25 years of fruitful and successful performance.
“We rename and customise to fulfil the needs and wants of today’s demand. Since its introduction in 1996, MSC Malaysia has catalysed and transformed Malaysia into a knowledge-based economy,” Annuar said at the Malaysia Digital Economy Week in Expo 2020 Dubai yesterday.
Annuar noted that MSC Malaysia has helped to drive the growth of the country’s digital economy for 22.6% of the national GDP currently.
“The strategic initiative was created to foster a conducive ecosystem driven by highend infrastructure development and ICT companies’ catchment within the identified corridors,” he said.
Thus, Annuar said in response to the constant advancements in digital technology, MSC Malaysia needs to evolve to meet new trends and progressing needs.
“It was indeed a programme never seen before in the world back in 1996 and can be considered as a game-changer.
“In many ways, MSC Malaysia was the original start-up at a time when the term ‘start-up’ had yet to be coined,” he said.
Meanwhile, under its new name of Malaysia Digital, Annuar said it will be introducing two flagship initiatives that will drive and catalyse the digital economy and investment opportunities in Malaysia and the region.
“First initiative is the ‘Di Rantau’ programme which is aimed at establishing Malaysia as the preferred digital nomad hub in a bid to boost digital adoption and to promote digital professional mobility and tourism across the country.
“Second, the Malaysia Digital Trade programme which is set to drive interoperability and greater harmonisation of standards, and regulatory approaches to facilitate trade across borders,” he added.
Annuar also said that the government through the Malaysia Digital Economy Corp will continue to drive the digital economy forward towards making Malaysia a globally competitive digital nation and digital hub of Asean.
“The government has identified the digital economy as one of Malaysia’s key economic growth areas to achieve our sustainable growth, while ensuring shared prosperity through fair and equitable distribution across income groups at rest cities and regions,” he said.
According to the 12th Malaysia Plan, he said the digital economy is projected to contribute 25.5% to Malaysia’s GDP by 2025.
Currently, Malaysia has been riding on the digital wave, building an ecosystem filled with advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things and Big Data analytics.
“The pandemic has tested us in many forms and restricted our ability to grow. However, it has also served as a great boon for the digital economy, paving the way for e-commerce and IR4.0 technologies to achieve tremendous growth,’’ he noted.
Citing the e-Conomy South-East Asia report by Google LLC, Temasek Holdings Ltd and Bain and Co, he said Malaysia saw three million new digital consumers since the start of the pandemic in 2020, and 81% of all Internet users are now consumers of digital services.
“It will see Malaysia’s overall Internet economy reaching US$21 billion (RM87.99 billion) in gross merchandise value in 2021, and should be hitting US$35 billion by 2025,” he stated.
As of September last year, Annuar said Malaysia’s e-commerce income stood at RM279 billion, a 17.1% increase compared to 2020.