Number of SMEs decreases by 7.3%

The drops are due to the pandemic and MCOs as well as the floods in December last year


THE number of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) have declined by 7.3% for the period between 2020 and July 2021, SME Corp Malaysia CEO Rizal Nainy.

This is due to the pandemic and Movement Control Orders (MCOs) as well as the floods in December last year which affected many SMEs.

Read more: SMEs expect a gloomy 2022

“The decline is not surprising due to the pandemic and MCOs that have affected their operations. Interrupted cashflow was a key challenge in the pandemic, as well as the disruption in supply.

“High operating costs are another factor. The floods of December 2021 also affected many SMEs. We understand that these issues have made it difficult for them to operate and they need support,” Rizal said at the Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia webinar on the SME Assistance Scheme.

Rizal further emphasised that SME Corp is committed to helping MSMEs overcome their challenges.

“In 2021, over 7,000 entrepreneurs have received assistance from SME Corp. We acknowledge that with limited funds, we cannot assist all SMEs in Malaysia. However, those who have received our assistance have shown a positive increase in recruitment, sales, revenue and profit.”

Read more: Business sentiment positive but SMEs still need aid

SME Corp business advisory and support division senior director Czarif Chai Abdullah spoke about the various programmes SME Corp offers to assist MSMEs in Malaysia.

Among the programmes that SME Corp offers includes the MyAssist MSMEs programme which is designed to help SMEs overcome their challenges by providing them with advisory services, business matching services and access to financing opportunities.

“Under this programme, we have developed a specialised online portal called MeetMe where SMEs can seek advice from various government agencies and also meet potential partners or customers. We have also launched a series of webinars to help SMEs improve their business management skills so that they can grow their businesses,” he added.

Czarif also urged SMEs to make use of the SME Competitiveness Rating for Enhancement to evaluate their own strengths and weaknesses, and then identify areas for improvement that will enable them to become more competitive in the marketplace.