1. MITI receives over 100 inputs on National Industry 4.0 policy
  2. CENDANA-MATRADE tie-up to grow export of arts, culture sector
  3. China’s CPO imports to rise if trade war occurs
  4. P2P Financing operator Fundaztic to serve 500 SMEs in 2018
  5. ASEAN and China launch year of innovation to further cooperation
  6. YTL Power International inks Collaboration Agreement with Agensi Inovasi Malaysia and the Global Peace Foundation to fund social intervention programmes
  7. Etisalat, Singtel, Softbank and Telefónica create global cyber security alliance

MITI receives over 100 inputs on National Industry 4.0 policy
The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) has received over 100 inputs on the National Industry 4.0 policy framework from relevant stakeholders. Second MITI Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan said the ministry was still finalising the draft after it was put online to get feedback from stakeholders. The policy outlines several broad strategies for Malaysia to embark on the journey that would transform the manufacturing industry landscape over the next decade, anchored on three shift factors to encourage Industry 4.0 adoption, namely people, process and technology.

CENDANA-MATRADE tie-up to grow export of arts, culture sector
The Cultural Economy Development Agency (CENDANA) will collaborate with Malaysia External Trade Development Corp (MATRADE) to provide opportunities for Malaysian artists and practitioners to tap into their respective programmes, facilities and networks to grow the export of the arts and culture sector. CENDANA’S Founding Chief Executive Officer, Izan Satrina Mohd Sallehuddin, said the collaboration would, among others, facilitate greater access for the local arts and culture community to CENDANA’s newly-announced Mobility Funding Programme as well as MATRADE’s export-promotion funding programmes such as Market Development Grand and Services Export Fund if they qualify according to the set criteria. MATRADE’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Mohd Shahreen Zainooreen Madros, said the collaboration would allow the national trade promotion agency to strengthen the export promotion of the other components of the creative economy, namely arts and culture sector.

China’s CPO imports to rise if trade war occurs
Crude palm oil is among the commodities that are expected to benefit in the event of a trade war between the United States and China, as the latter may purchase more palm oil, said Oil World Executive Director Thomas Mielke. “So far, China has threatened to retaliate if the US were to implement import taxes on Chinese products … but so far, the threat is just an announcement,” he told reporters in Kuala Lumpur. China, the world’s largest soybean importer and the biggest buyer of US soybean, earlier announced that it may impose a 25 per cent tariff on soybean imports from the US in retaliation against US’ proposed tariffs on its goods. “China’s decision to impose taxes will only be decided in May or early July,” he said.

P2P Financing operator Fundaztic to serve 500 SMEs in 2018
In November 2016, the Securities Commission of Malaysia announced six licenses for the operating of peer-to-peer (P2P) financing platforms in the country so that SMEs in the country have an alternative channel for access to financing. Fundaztic, one of the licensed platform fully owned and managed by Peoplender Sdn. Bhd. has been experiencing rapid growth as it targets to assist the micro and small businesses including start-ups obtain funding via its platform. Fundaztic, has, to-date hosted more than 100 investment notes on its platform. This translates to serving over a 100 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) across Malaysia through P2P financing. Fundaztic is the first P2P financing platform in the country to serve 100 SMEs and are further targeting to serve 500 SMEs by year end. The fully digital financing platform enables SMEs to secure business funding from retail and institutional investors through crowdfunding anytime, anywhere across any devices. All processes are online, hence, SMEs across the country can submit an application from the comforts of where their businesses are located. Fundaztic was launched in July 2017. To date, Fundaztic has successfully disbursed a total of RM10.05 million, with prompt repayments by SMEs and investors are expecting returns of up to 13% per annum.

ASEAN and China launch year of innovation to further cooperation
ASEAN and China have officially launched the ASEAN-China Year of Innovation today in Beijing. ASEAN and China established dialogue partner relations in 1991. Since then, China has become one of ASEAN’s most substantive dialogue partners. In 2016, ASEAN and China commemorated the 25th Anniversary of ASEAN China Dialogue Relations. This year, both sides will be celebrating 15 years of ASEAN-China Strategic Partnership. To enhance cooperation and further advance relations, ASEAN and China have designated a theme for ASEAN-China cooperation over the last three years. In 2016, ASEAN and China commemorated the Year of Educational Exchanges and in 2017, both sides commemorated the Year of Tourism Cooperation. In line with Singapore’s ASEAN Chairmanship themes of Resilience and Innovation, ASEAN and China agreed to designate 2018 as the ASEAN-China Year of Innovation.

YTL Power International inks Collaboration Agreement with Agensi Inovasi Malaysia and the Global Peace Foundation to fund social intervention programmes
YTL Power International Berhad today signed a Collaboration Agreement with Agensi Inovasi Malaysia (AIM) and the Global Peace Foundation (GPF) to provide RM184,600 of funding into the Communities Unite for Purewater (CUP) social intervention programme run by the Global Peace Foundation. CUP seeks to provide clean and safe water to uplift the welfare of targeted rural and underserved communities, particularly the Orang Asli communities in West Malaysia and other indigenous communities in East Malaysia. Based on the latest estimates from WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme 2017, 3 in 10 people worldwide, or 2.1 billion, lack access to safe, readily available water at home, and 6 in 10, or 4.5 billion, lack safely managed sanitation

Etisalat, Singtel, Softbank and Telefónica create global cyber security alliance
Etisalat, Singtel, SoftBank and Telefónica today signed an agreement to create the first Global Telco Security Alliance offering enterprises access to a comprehensive portfolio of cyber security services. The alliance will form one of the world’s biggest managed security services platforms with a combined customer base of more than 1.2 billion customers in over 60 countries across Asia Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas. Between them, they operate 22 world-class Security Operation Centres (SOCs) and employ more than 6,000 cyber security experts. Through their extensive resources and capabilities, which will expand as the alliance brings in more members, the group can better protect enterprises against rising cyber security risks as the information security environment becomes increasingly complex. Under the agreement, the group will share network intelligence on cyber threats and leverage their joint global reach, assets and cyber security capabilities to serve customers worldwide.