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SMEs Seek To Emerge As Economic Powerhouse With New Initiatives
 
News From : DagangHalal.com (6/17/2010)

KUALA LUMPUR, June 16 (Bernama) -- New initiatives undertaken by the Small and Medium Industry (SMI) Association will help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to realise their vision of becoming an economic powerhouse.


The initiatives include participating in the SMI 1-Stop Solution 2010 Exhibition and sending a mission to the 6th APEC SME Technology Conference and Fair in Fuzhou and the World Expo in Shanghai, both in China.


SMI Association president Chua Tiam Wee said continuous efforts were critical to further strengthen the SME sector which faced challenges such as access to financing and markets, technological competition and human resource shortage.


"In this respect, I am pleased that our recent proposal of topping up the Working Capital Guarantee Scheme under the 10th Malaysia Plan (10MP) has resulted in the scheme being topped up by another RM3 billion," Chua said.


"This shows that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak listens to the ground on the needs of the SMEs and we trust the government's sincerity in developing the SME sector," he said during the launch of the SME Recognition Award 2010 here Wednesday.


The event was officiated by Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Donald Lim Siang Chai.


Chua said the association had submitted 16 proposals in the recent budget dialogue with the Finance Ministry to accelerate private investments.


These included soft loan proposals, revamp of SME Bank, redefinition of SMEs, and the Goods and Services Tax (GST), he said.


On the award ceremony, Lim said that there will be roadshows in 15 cities and towns prior to the award's closing date on August 31, 2010.


"Through these roadshows, we will take the opportunity to disseminate information on the transformation of the economy under the New Economic Model as well as the 10MP and to obtain feedback from local SMEs which can help in formulation of appropriate government policies," he said.


At a press conference later, Lim said the government viewed seriously the provision of credit facilities for SMEs to facilitate their participation in key economic activities.


"The government will consider increasing the financial resources of the SME Bank and the Agro Bank to enable them to provide effective services to entrepreneurs," he said.


"The government will also continuously working to formulate new strategies to improve the performances of this sector, while setting the ground rules and providing a conducive environment," he added.


-- BERNAMA

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