Highlights:

  1. Government to boost SME participation in DFTZ
  2. RHB partners ABSS, PayNet to offer SMEs Zero-cost Payment Platform
  3. Prolonged US-China trade war will impact Malaysia: ABAC
  4. Khazanah’s directors resign en masse
  5. Franchise sector to contribute RM35 bln to GDP
  6. Japan introduces program highlighting clean sports environment for 2020 Olympics

Government to boost SME participation in DFTZ
Minister of Communications and Multimedia, Gobind Singh Deo said the government would intensify efforts to ensure more small and medium enterprises (SMEs) join the Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) as a platform to market their products abroad. He pointed out that cross-border online businesses would become the main business of the future and, as such, SMEs should be encouraged to participate in the sector. “The government will continue implementing initiatives that benefit SMEs. The government will also monitor the performance of SME exports through this platform so that they continue to be viable in the long run,” he said at the Dewan Rakyat this morning. Gobind Singh said that since the DFTZ was implemented in 2017, 3,300 SMEs have joined the platform. Records from the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) showed that up to April 2018, 70 SMEs had generated sales worth RM52.1 million with an export value of RM18.1 million, he added. He said that in empowering the DFTZ, the government was focusing not just on any particular platform, such as Alibaba, but on all e-commerce platforms that could help develop the SMEs. He added that MDEC also worked with the International Trade and Industry Ministry, Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (Matrade) and SME Corp to promote SME participation in the DFTZ through various platforms, including Alibaba and Lazada.

RHB partners ABSS, PayNet to offer SMEs Zero-cost Payment Platform
RHB Bank Bhd. has partnered Asian Business Software Solutions (ABSS) and Payments Network Malaysia (PayNet) which operate Financio and JomPAY, respectively, to offer a zero-cost payment platform to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the country. In a statement today, RHB said the partnership would benefit all SMEs using the bank’s e-Solution which provides Financio, a cloud-based accounting software, aimed at empowering SMEs to optimise business efficiency. “RHB SME customers will now be able to conduct payment transactions and receive JomPAY payments from their customers using e-Invoice solution at zero-cost,” it said. Effective yesterday, the zero-cost would benefit all SMEs as e-commerce was increasingly growing in Malaysia and was expected to rise further to more than 20 per cent a year in 2020, RHB said.

Prolonged US-China trade war will impact Malaysia: ABAC
The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Business Advisory Council (ABAC) said Malaysia will be impacted by the trade war between the United States and China in the long run. ABAC Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Working Group Chairman Datuk Rohana Mahmood said Malaysia, a nation where trading made up 78 per cent of Gross Domestic Product, would feel the impact if the trade war were prolonged. “We can’t feel it (the trade war impact) immediately, but studies show that countries like Malaysia, South Korea and Singapore will be impacted if the trade war continued and went on for some time,” she told reporters after ABAC’s meeting in Kuala Lumpur. She said Malaysia, as part of the global key value supply chain, could play a role in finding solutions to mitigate the impact of the trade war. Sometimes, a small nation has a role to play,” she noted.

Khazanah’s directors resign en masse
All nine board members, including managing director Azman Mokhtar has resigned from Khazanah Nasional. Khazanah confirmed the resignations in a statement today, saying that the move will “facilitate a smooth and orderly transition under the new government”. Khazanah said it would issue a statement later.

Franchise sector to contribute RM35 bln to GDP
The government aims to increase the franchise sector’s contribution to the Gross National Product (GDP) to RM35 billion by 2020 compared to the current RM27.7 billion. Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said the target was realistic and achievable based on strengthening industry trends. He said the government’s confidence in achieving the target was based on the existence of tested policies, systems and infrastructure. “We also have strong backing from industry players with proven achievements.” He said the government would continue to act as a facilitator introducing programmes and policies to assist both franchisors and franchisees, in line with efforts to develop a resilient and competitive business community.

Japan introduces program highlighting clean sports environment for 2020 Olympics
Japan´s Anti-Doping Agency (JADA) plans to develop and introduce various programs and activities to create a clean sports environment and establish the integrity of sports and society as Japan hosts the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games. As part of the program, JADA has organised interviews with world-class athletes under the Play True 2020, Sport for Tomorrow (SFT)´ project recently. The project had a wide range of athletes from different countries, sports and generations relay their truth messages found in sports and in themselves, a statement said. The agency highlighted the truth messages from Japanese athletes Akito Watabe (Nordic Combined, Olympic medalist and 2017 World Cup champion) and Minato Oike (BMX Freestyle Park, UCI BMX Freestyle World Cup 2018 champion). “The highest excellence is like water and changing the way that one is, smoothly and flexibly, according to any circumstance without resistance, ” expressed Akito Watabe on his messages about truth in himself.