KOTA KINABALU: Sabah needs to reset its priority by focusing more on the Micro Economy.
In making the call, Usukan Assemblyman Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak said the move was vital to preserve, support and assist small economic players in the state.
He cited the players as traders and small-scale entrepreneurs; self-employed individuals including grab drivers and shopowners; retail workers; construction sector workers; farmers, breeders and fishermen; and freelancers who were most affected by the Covid-19 Pandemic.
In this regard, Salleh suggested three things that need to be given priority to assist the small players economically.
He said the government should continue with infrastructure and housing construction projects to stimulate cash flow in the local economy as well as increase the confidence of investors and the local community.
Secondly, he stressed the importance of cooperation and coordination of existing facilities such as funds, grants, or money lending to really facilitate and help those involved.
In addition, he said the government needs to provide a suitable market for economic small players.
He said Reset priority was not a drastic action, but aimed at improving performance.
“For example, when the performance of our smartphone is unsatisfactory, then we need to ‘Reset’ the phone to improve its performance.
“The New Norma has demanded that we” think outside the box “and may even create a ‘New Box’,” he said when debating the 2021 State Budget at the Sabah State Legislative Assembly in Kota Kinabalu recently.
Apart from that, Salleh said the government needs to explore new economic potentials, especially those involving the fisheries, agriculture and tourism sectors.
He also suggested several approaches to further develop Usukan.
He said this included the rebranding of Usukan as a gateway and part of a group of districts in the Northern Region of Sabah as “Northern Sabah”.
He said it was similar to the concept of rebranding commonly seen in developed countries.
Salleh said it was important that the implementation of the Pan Borneo Highway be accelerated to achieve the desired result.
He said this was because the development of the Pan Borneo Highway would further encourage the development of other infrastructure including electricity, telecommunications, and broadband.