MID focuses on resolving SME concerns


KOTA KINABALU: The Industrial Development Ministry (MID) is currently focusing on resolving the ongoing concerns of the small and medium entrepreneurs (SMEs) as part of the effort to ensure that they would be more competitive, said Minister Datuk Seri Dr Joachim Gunsalam.

This will at the same time help in enhancing the wealth creation and social wellbeing of the state particularly and the country in general, he said.

Dr Joachim, who is also Deputy Chief Minister said this when witnessing the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the franchise of Pak Mund Laksa between EO Triton Success Sdn Bhd and Food BV Sdn Bhd here today.

Dr Joachim said as the backbone of the Malaysian economy, SMEs make up 98.5 per cent of the total businesses or approximately 907,065. SMEs provide 66 per cent of employment, contribute 37.1 per cent of Malaysia’s GDP and 17.3 per cent of total exports.

“Undoubtedly SMEs are contributing significantly to the wealth of the nation.

“Therefore, as a key economic contributor, the State Government and its agencies have been implementing various initiatives such as soft loans, matching grants, training, e-commerce assistance, technology acquisition funds and many more.

“The State Government and its agencies also offer various assistance to SMEs to grow and develop their businesses. The assistance is not only limited to financial matters, such as grants and soft loans but also non-financial assistance, such as advisory, technical, marketing, management, networking, distribution, research and development initiatives,” he said.

He was also happy to note that Pak Mund Laksa which started in Sabah is having goals of opening 150 stores in five years not only in Sabah or Malaysia but also in the ASEAN region and plans to manufacture and supply its own range of sauces and other food items.

He said it was reported that the local franchise industry has been growing rapidly, with 1,149 franchisers registered under the Franchise Act 1998.

Last year, the number of franchise outlets that had opened in the country rose by 47 per cent year-on-year to 13,779, creating around 49,000 jobs, he said, adding the Government is taking efforts to develop micro franchises are also being taken to help the B40 income group.0