KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 3 — The Ministry of Entrepreneur Development (MED) has received the government’s approval for an additional allocation of between 15 and 20 per cent for its development budget for next year.
Its minister, Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Yusof said under the 2020 Budget, which was presented in October, MED received a total allocation of RM539 million, of which RM325.5 million was for development budget.
“Many quarters have given feedback that it is important for MED to get more funding to implement various programmes through agencies like the National Entrepreneur Group Economic Fund (TEKUN Nasional).
“So, I have discussed with Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on the need for a slight amendment (to the budget) to implement the programmes that we have planned, and the prime minister has agreed to this.
“This will enable MED to channel the funds to various agencies based on merits,” he told reporters after launching Tekun Nasional’s 20th anniversary celebration here today.
Mohd Redzuan said the additional funds would be used for programmes that could support the national policy towards making Malaysia an entrepreneurial country.
“We want to be a leading manufacturing country, not a consumer country,” he said.
He said Dr Mahathir urged MED to identify entrepreneurs from every district and nurture them to become global champions.
“Dr Mahathir says we need to create ‘cronyism’. Tekun National is the ‘crony’. Our goal is to make you a champion no matter how small you are,” Mohd Redzuan said.
He said the entrepreneurship sector is an important component in bridging the economic gap in line with the National Entrepreneurship Policy (DKN) 2030.
“We want to make Malaysia an entrepreneurial country. We want to see people having high purchasing power and income. This will also help the less fortunate to enjoy the shared prosperity,” he said.
Based on the 2016 national economic census, 920,000 new business entities have been created, of which 9,800 are small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
In 2017, the SME sector grew 7.2 per cent compared to 5.2 per cent in 2016, surpassing the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of 5.9 per cent.
Currently, the contribution of SMEs to GDP is 38.3 per cent.
According to DKN2030, the government is targeting SMEs contribution to GDP to reach 50 per cent.
Mohd Redzuan said the government has also welcomed MED’s proposal to implement the ’carves out’ policy, which stipulates at least 50 per cent of government procurement to prioritise local goods.
“We have contacted potential entrepreneurs. We can’t neglect them. We will make sure that government procurement prioritises local products,” he said.
Hence, he proposes that Tekun Nasional set up an incubation centre to develop and guide entrepreneurs in strategic sectors in the areas of expertise and technologies such as digital and industrial revolution 4.0.
“We will make sure that in six months they have the resilience, strength, courage to become independent entrepreneurs.
“For example, in the agriculture sector, we carry out many agricultural activities but do not produce good results and instill confidence that can contribute to the development of the country,” he said.
As such, the incubation centre is expected to train and provide market data to Tekun Nasional entrepreneurs on potential and high market value crops not only for domestic market but also global market, he said.
In total, he said the government had provided nearly RM6 billion in funding to 440,000 Tekun Nasional entrepreneurs. — Bernama