PETALING JAYA: Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) must consider remodelling their businesses and tap into new markets in the face of the challenging economic climate, says Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun.
The MCA vice-president said instead of solely relying on domestic demand, SMEs should start finding other avenues of growth.
“In the nation’s paradigm shift to international trade, we are looking forward to increasing the export capability of our SMEs.
“We have the competitive advantage as Malaysia is ranked sixth (out of 140 economies) in the top 10 Most Competitive Asia-Pacific Economies in the Global Competitiveness Report 2015-2016 by the World Economic Forum,” she said in her speech at the launch of the Platinum Business Awards 2016 here yesterday.
In the same report, Malaysia was rated at the top – alongside China and Thailand – in the regional rankings of emerging and developing Asia.
Chew said SMEs should also make use of the resources and free trade agreement mechanism such as the Asean Economic Community and the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.
“There will be stiff competition from foreign SMEs and large enterprises.
“Hence, when SMEs brace for change and make necessary adjustments to advance with progressive initiatives, we can tap into new markets and opportunities and benefit from them,” she added.
Later, she launched the rebranding of SME Recognition Award, now known as the Platinum Business Awards.
Organised by the SME Association of Malaysia for the past 14 years, the award is to honour SMEs and individuals for their outstanding achievements and contributions in their respective fields.
Recently, the SME industry had lamented on the burden to cough up more for operational costs due to the new minimum wage implementation this July, saying that the costs would have to be passed on to consumers.