MSMEs adopting e-commerce, exceed govt target

The revised goal of 1.1m MSMEs should be met by 2025, which is 4 years earlier than what was originally planned, says minister

By FAYYADH JAAFAR / pic MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

OVER 875,000 micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) have embraced e-commerce as of the end of last year, exceeding the government’s target set for 2025.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamad said the revised goal of 1.1 million MSMEs should be met by 2025, which is four years earlier than what was originally planned.

He said this is possible because of the MyDigital Blueprint which aimed to transform the country into a digital economy by 2030.

“The government hopes that the MyDigital Blueprint will guide Malaysia’s transformation to become a digitally-driven and high-tech nation by 2030,” he said during his opening speech at the World Digital Economy and Technology 2021 today.

The minister added that the blueprint is divided into six clusters, namely the economic; digital talent; digital infrastructure and data; emerging technology; government and society; and the digital government clusters.

Mustapa noted that the government is currently working closely with relevant agencies to implement the blueprint.

“For the economic cluster, the Digital Investment Office — a one-stop digital investment to facilitate ease of doing business for investors — has approved RM16.5 billion in total digital investments, meaning that we are on track to achieve the RM70 billion digital investment target by 2025,” he added.

He went on to say that as part of the digital talent cluster, MyDigital Corp recently teamed up with AirAsia Academy to help students learn digital skills faster and give professionals digital skills.

“We are also partnering with Microsoft Malaysia in an upcoming digital skills training programme for Malaysian civil servants in the public sector to encourage the use of digital technology in their everyday work.

“With regards to the digital infrastructure and data cluster, Malaysia’s 4G coverage has reached about 95.53% as of this year’s first quarter under Phase 1 of the Jendela initiative,” he said.

Mustapa added that the government is also committed to providing affordable access to broadband services for all Malaysians.

For the Digital Society cluster, he said e-payments among consumers and merchants have seen an increase over the past few months, with QR pay becoming accepted as an everyday norm even at the micro-enterprise level.

“Meanwhile, for the Emerging Technology cluster is the development of a Vaccine Management System during the pandemic based on blockchain technology,” he said.

Lastly, with regards to the government cluster, he said about 80% of all federal ministries, departments and statutory bodies are now able to receive e-payments. In addition, 75% of ministries and agencies are using the data-sharing platform MyGDX.

He also noted that the government has been pleased with these achievements but warned that they must be cautious about external factors beyond their control.

“Global markets have been hit hard; inflation in some countries has hit record highs and there is a war going on in Eastern Europe, where a lot of our global supply of grain comes from.

“In Malaysia, too, the government has seen its subsidy bill rise sharply as a result of rising prices on the world stage.

“Things are looking positive, but of course, in the context of international developments beyond our control, we must always remain cautiously optimistic,” he concluded.