Highlights:

  1. SME programme financing campaign to benefit 1,000 SMEs
  2. SME Corp to continue with Bumiputera Budding Youth Entrepreneurship programme
  3. Rafidah calls for an end to “race supremacy” among Malaysian
  4. UK Trade Commissioner Leads AI Trade Delegation to Malaysia
  5. Malaysia’s palm oil output to see stagnant growth or drop slightly in 2018

SME programme financing campaign to benefit 1,000 SMEs
Peer-to-peer (P2P) financing platform, QuicKash Malaysia plans to host and raise up to RM100 million in investment notes to benefit 1,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) through its SME Programme Financing campaign. QuicKash, a unit of ManagePay Bhd, said it was the only P2P financing recognised market operator that offered principal protection investments and the platform attributed much of its success to the unique feature that guaranteed investors their principal sum invested. “After successfully raising RM12.6 Million for 13 SMEs with a zero default rate, the platform would be launching its new programme to benefit even more SMEs by specifically targeting the underbanked population of SMEs,” it said in a statement today. Chief Executive Officer Ong Kooi Hooi said the programme would offer fixed-investment notes with short-term financing tenure of three, six, or nine months for RM25,000, RM50,000 and RM100,000, respectively. “Interest rates from as low as 1.25 per cent per month will be offered for those with good credit rating,” he said, adding that its charged a flat platform fee of 3.0 per cent.

SME Corp to continue Tube programme
SME Corporation Malaysia (SME Corp), which has been placed under the Ministry of Entrepreneur Development (MED), will continue to implement the Bumiputera Budding Youth Entrepreneurship (Tube) programme in the quest to create more Bumiputera youth entrepreneurs. Its Deputy Chief Executive Officer II, Mohd Rithaudden Makip said the assurance was given by Entrepreneur Development Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Yusof who wanted the agency to continue conducting entrepreneurship development programmes, including Tube. He said this was in line with the mid-term review of the 11th Malaysia Plan’s (2016-2020) presented by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad recently, which emphasised the economic development of small and medium enterprises. “Tube, which has entered its fourth series, will continue to give exposure and shift as expected by Tun Mahathir in minting new youth entrepreneurs,” he told reporters in Kuala Lumpur. SME Corp was previously under the Ministry of International Trade and Industry.

Rafidah calls for an end to “race supremacy” among Malaysians
Former Cabinet Minister Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz has called for an end to Malaysians playing the “race supremacy” tune, describing it as detrimental and counter-productive to the country and people. Supremacy, she said, must always be that of Malaysia itself and not any group, race or religion of the citizens. Writing in her debut column today in The Sun newspaper, Tan Sri Rafidah, popularly dubbed Malaysia’s Iron Lady, said Malaysians would only be highly respected globally when, from among them, rise young Malaysian citizens who are competent and skilled, and whose performance and achievements are regarded as excellent when measured by global benchmarks and standards. “Citizens of Malaysia are Malaysians regardless of ancestry and heritage. That is the undeniable fact. I am proud to be a Malaysian. I am certain my fellow Malaysians must feel the same. “The dawn of New Malaysia brings with it new hopes and aspirations, a new beginning. Our nation is so blessed,” she wrote. Tan Sri Rafidah was Minister of International Trade and Industry for 21 years until 2008.

UK’s Trade Commissioner for Asia Pacific Leads Artificial Intelligence Trade Delegation to Malaysia
Nine innovative UK Tech companies arrived in Malaysia today for a two-day visit to meet and network with significant industry players such as Telekom Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur. Covering a broad spectrum within the Tech field, specialisations include cyber security, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT). Offering technologies applicable to a whole range of business interests, there are potential partnerships particularly relevant to the fields of education, business and financial services, healthcare, oil & gas and real estate. The UK delegation will be led by Natalie Black, Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Asia Pacific (pic). Black said, “The UK has an impressive track record in the development and deployment of AI and our nine participating companies exemplify British expertise. Businesses worldwide, including in Malaysia and ASEAN, are demanding cutting-edge technology solutions for the modern world. We are ready to deliver.”

Malaysia’s palm oil output to see stagnant growth or drop slightly in 2018
Malaysia’s palm oil production is expected to experience stagnant growth or drop slightly this year due to lower yields. Malaysia Palm Oil Council (MPOC) Chairman Datuk Lee Yeow Chor said since palm oil was categorised as an agriculture product, the output usually fluctuated throughout the year depending on weather conditions.  “Last year, our production stood at 19.9 million tonnes, up 15 per cent, from 2016’s output of 17.5 million tonnes. “Because of the drastic growth in output last year, we foresee that this year’s production will be stagnant or drop,” he told reporters at the Malaysia-China Palm Oil Trade Fair and Seminar (POTS) 2018 in Nanjing. Officiated by the Primary Industries Minister Teresa Kok, POTS 2018 attracted 400 participants from Malaysia and China. Themed, ‘Enhanced Trade, Maximise Opportunities Through Malaysian Palm Oil’, the one-day event was jointly organised by MPOC and the Malaysian Palm Oil Board.