Export markets crucial for growth of local MSMEs: Minister

|     Danial Norjidi     |

THE importance of encouraging and assisting local micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to explore and participate in export markets was highlighted during the afternoon session of the 15th Legislative Council meeting yesterday.

Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah spoke on local MSMEs and exports while responding to a question from Legislative Council (LegCo) member and Penghulu of Mukim Telisai Yang Berhormat Haji Ramli bin Haji Lahit.

During the session, the LegCo member touched on the participation of local entrepreneurs in overseas exhibitions and expos, noting that this is very helpful to small and medium industry entrepreneurs in improving the quality and production of their respective products and services.

He asked how the quality control, increase in production and product marketing processes are implemented.

In response, the minister said, “Indeed, if we look at national statistics, export volume is low.” He affirmed that the government is encouraging local MSMEs to take part in and explore the export market.

Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah. – RAHWANI ZAHARI

“But, when we export our goods abroad, a number of things must be taken into account,” he said. These include: quality; volume – how much can be manufactured and produced; price competitiveness; branding; standards and so on.

“Currently, the ministry is working with the ASEAN-Japan Centre, ASEAN-Korea Centre and ASEAN-China Centre to provide technical programmes to further improve the development of local products,” continued the minister. “Hopefully this effort will be able to result in quality products in our country.”

He noted that the ministry is also working with DARe (Darussalam Enterprise) and the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism to assist companies with potential to export to further enhance the capacity of the entrepreneurs and their capabilities with HACCP standard good manufacturing, agriculture and aquaculture practices.

The minister also affirmed that, through regional and international networks, the ministry provides opportunities for local agencies and companies in the country to learn and enhance their experience through participation in overseas expo.

He referred to an initiative from the government through Ghanim International Corporation, where the company works with MSMEs in the country to improve their quality and open up the export market.

“With this initiative, we can market local products meaningfully and benefit from economies of scale,” he added.