KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 3 -- The Ministry of Entrepreneur Development (MED) is allocating RM5 million for Best Exporters Programme 2.0 (BEP 2.0) next year, said its minister Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Yusof.
The allocation he said, was proof of the government’s support towards the country’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
“A collaboration between three agencies, namely SME Bank, an agency under the MED, Unit Peneraju Agenda Bumiputera (TERAJU) and Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) saw 73 companies successfully generated a total of RM141.4 million in export revenue through the Best Exporters Program (BEP).
“SME Bank's joint efforts together with TERAJU and MATRADE to implement the BEP Programme is timely, especially in increasing the SMEs' contribution towards the country's exports,” he told reporters at the launch of the business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce platform - ODELA, here today.
The e-commerce platform according to him, will be the game-changer in the SMEs’ business landscape by providing access to a more systematic and informative e-commerce platform, especially for B2B activities.
ODELA will assist the government in its efforts to strengthen the country's digital economy, which is expected to open up more opportunities and bring in huge benefits.
“In line with the objective of the National Entrepreneurship Policy 2030 in structuring and enhancing the country's entrepreneurial ecosystem, ODELA also plays the role of Digital Social Responsibility by providing comprehensive functions to meet the unique needs of B2B industry and its players,” he said.
Meanwhile, SME Bank group president and chief executive officer Aria Putera Ismail said, as a leading Development Financial Institutions (DFIs) serving the SMEs, the bank has approved new financing worth RM87.8 million to 13 companies involved in the BEP program.
“The financing provided was for working capital and purchase of assets.
"From the 73 companies that participated in the BEP, 43 were from the manufacturing sector and 30 were from the services sector. To enhance the capacity and capability of the participants, our subsidiary, Centre for Entrepreneur Development and Research Sdn Bhd (CEDAR) also provided suitable capacity building training,” said Aria Putera.
Apart from CEDAR, National Entrepreneurship Institute (INSKEN) and COOPMATRADE were also appointed as capacity development service providers for the programme, he said.
According to Aria Putera, SME Bank has set a target of having 8,000 merchants and buyers utilising ODELA following the first year of its launching.
"ODELA taps on new technologies and custom-designed to enable the entrepreneurs to make transactions, facilitate exchange, foster innovation and partnership across vast ecosystems,” he said.
SME Bank would continue to support government’s initiative by providing financing to SMEs particularly in the tourism sector, in conjunction with Visit Malaysia 2020; infrastructure, manufacturing and technology adoption as well as those involved in high impact sectors, added Aria Putera.