Ministry optimistic new council will spur entrepreneurship improvement


PETALING JAYA: The Ministry of Entrepreneurship Development and Cooperatives (Medac) is optimistic that the National Entrepreneurship Development Council (MPKN) will be used as a catalyst for Malaysia’s ambition to become a great entrepreneurial nation by 2030.

In line with this goal, micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) are expected to contribute up to 50% of the national gross domestic product (GDP), compared to 38.9% in 2019.

MPKN is ready to drive the development and growth of MSMEs and at the same time act as a communication platform between the federal and state governments. The latter serves to strengthen the current corporate ecosystem at all levels.

MPKN is also expected to play a leadership role in coordinating policy and further progress for the development of the nation’s entrepreneurship. In addition, the MPKN will determine the extent of the cooperation between the federal and state governments and recommend integrated strategic initiatives and measures to tackle problems, challenges and obstacles for entrepreneurs at all levels holistically.

The opening meeting of the MPKN took place practically on Tuesday and was hosted by the Minister for Entrepreneurship Development and Cooperatives, Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar (pix), headed. MPKN membership includes the minister and permanent secretary of the ministry responsible for entrepreneurship development in Sabah and Sarawak, as well as ministries and federal agencies represented by the secretary general of the ministry and the head of the government department of the agency concerned. Other members of the meeting are State Councilors or Exkos, who are responsible for developing entrepreneurship.

At the opening session, the strategic cooperation between Medac and the government development agencies of Kedah and Perlis was discussed. The strategic cooperation overlooks the strengthening of the current entrepreneurship and MSME development programs in their respective countries. In addition, Medac will investigate appropriate methods and initiatives to help entrepreneurs in Sabah and Sarawak, especially indoors, to diversify local products and services, improve current infrastructure and improve their productivity. Medac will also look into expanding market access for local MSMEs with the Sabah Ministry of Industrial Development and the Sarawak Economic Development Corporation.

“The creation of MPKN is critical given the importance of restoring the economy hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. Medac has always been committed to helping MSMEs, including informal entrepreneurs and cooperatives at all levels. The current plight requires MSMEs to improve their competitiveness and their ability to tackle tough economic challenges, ”said Wan Junaidi.

The Minister also mentioned that through MPKN, Medac will identify appropriate strategic and proactive measures to address problems and challenges for entrepreneurs. Medac will also coordinate the implementation of federal and state level entrepreneurship initiatives to be in line with current socio-economic policies and government planning, and to bring an ideal and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem closer.

“MPKN is also the platform for Medac to form a collective collaboration with all parties involved, so that the implementation of the strategies and initiatives outlined can produce competitive and successful local entrepreneurs in a fair, just and inclusive economy. In addition, MPKN Medac will help to obtain accurate information on the current updated situation of entrepreneurship development and relevant basic information as well as data on informal entrepreneurs, which account for more than 1 million people. This information and data will help Medac to better plan and take effective action that will meet the real needs of entrepreneurs and avoid duplication of work between state and federal government. This will result in a prudent and optimized spending of available government resources, ”he said.

Wan Junaidi said that in 2021, Medac will implement various programs with a total allocation of RM 3.5 billion through its 5E approach, Enculture, Enable, Empower, Energize and Engage, aimed at entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs at all levels and at backgrounds benefit all levels. Programs include corporate finance, rental discounts, capacity building and training, digitization and technology adoption, access to markets, as well as targeted moratoriums and other support to help entrepreneurs adapt to new business norms following the Covid-19 pandemic.

Medac will work with state governments to mobilize resources and ideas for providing support and services to current and potential entrepreneurs across the country. The MPKN will essentially assist Medac in leading the country’s entrepreneurship development efforts in an integrated manner, in line with the ministry’s mission to support the country’s socio-economic development agenda.