Concurrent Session B: “Are We There Yet? Future-Proofing Malaysian SMEs”
In Malaysia, 98.5% of business establishments are small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that contribute almost 40% to the country’s GDP and employ more than 7 million workers*. According to the World Bank, Malaysia’s SMEs have been underperforming in comparison to peer countries in terms of output and productivity, even before the pandemic. Most notably, digital adoption among SMEs lag far behind with only one in three businesses implementing digital transformation strategies. The pandemic not only adversely impacted SMEs, it also highlighted the lack of readiness of many SMEs, especially micro-businesses, to shift to an online environment.
How can SMEs scale up their digitisation efforts, and what role can ministries and agencies like MITI, MEDAC, MDeC, and SME Corp play to future-proof the backbone of our economy, the SMEs? This session will explore this and other issues affecting the digitalisation efforts of SMEs with a view towards ensuring higher resilience against future shocks.
*Department of Statistics Malaysia