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Budget 2024: Initiatives for Businesses (SMEs & Microentrepreneurs)

In the recent tabling of Budget 2024, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim announced several initiatives not just for individuals but also for business owners, specifically micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs). Some of those initiatives include grants, loans, business financing as well as capital.

Anwar Budget 2024 Businesses

So, here are the key highlights and initiatives you can keep an eye on for your business!

MyStartup Platform

The government is to allocate RM28 million to develop the MYStartup platform for start-up companies.

According to their website, the MYStartup platform, initiated by MOSTI and developed by Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd, is a national project designed to foster interaction among Malaysia's startup ecosystem. It acts as a comprehensive directory for Malaysian startups, investors, and other key stakeholders, offering information on ecosystem programs, talent acquisition, and community-curated content.

During his speech, DSAI said that the funds will encourage startups, including Bumiputera Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) entrepreneurs to venture into high-growth, high-value sectors such as the digital economy, space technology and Electronics and Electrical (E&E).

GLC & GLIC Funding

Next year, business owners can also expect funding of up to RM1.5 billion from government-linked companies and government-linked investment companies (GLCs and GLICs) to encourage startups, including small and medium enterprises (SMEs) entrepreneurs, to venture into high-growth, high-value (HGHV) fields.

Business Loan Facilities

Financial facilities amounting to RM2.4 billion are to be made available to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) via Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), Bank Simpanan Nasional (BSN) and National Entrepreneurial Group Economic Fund (Tekun).

According to RinggitPlus, the breakdown of these business loan facilities is as follows:

  • RM1.4 billion under BSN micro-loan: For business capital, equipment purchases, premises, and marketing initiatives for hawkers and small entrepreneurs

  • RM330 million via TEKUN: For financing facilities to small traders, such as batik and craft operators, orang asli entrepreneurs, and Bumiputera of Sabah and Sarawak. RM30 million will be earmarked specifically for businesses run by the Indian community.

  • RM720 million was allocated specifically for women and youth entrepreneurs.

AIM Small Business Capital

The government will provide microlender Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia (AIM) with a funding allocation of RM10 million to help run programmes for its ‘Sahabat Usahawan’, or micro-entrepreneurs registered with the national micro-credit organisations.

Previously, AIM has assisted almost one million small businesses by providing them with capital, helping especially single mothers and low-income individuals.

Digitalisation Grants

The government also announced RM100 million in digitalisation grants — RM5,000 to 20,000 MSMEs — to fund upgrades of sales, inventory and digital accounting systems.

DSAI continued by saying that, under BNM, RM900 million in loan funds will be made available to SMEs for automation and digitalisation to encourage SME companies to increase business productivity through automation and digitisation.

My Thoughts on DSAI’s Budget 2024 Initiatives for Businesses

Budget 2024 showcases Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's dedication to bolstering businesses, particularly MSMEs and micro-entrepreneurs, in Malaysia.

With significant funds allocated to diverse programs like the MYStartup platform and digitalisation efforts, the government is paving the way for businesses to explore high-growth sectors and digital advancements. Specific allocations for marginalized groups ensure inclusive growth.

For business owners, capitalizing on these government-backed opportunities is crucial. Doing so promises growth, modernization, and the chance to be at the forefront of Malaysia's economic transformation.

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