During the IBM Malaysia Media Roundtable, Budget 2021: Digitalisation and Technology Adoption as an Enabler for All session, Managing Director, Catherine Lian highlighted that the recently tabled budget is a crucial step in a series of initiatives that the government will undertake to address the impact of the pandemic.
“The comprehensive measures unveiled by the government in 2021 budget which prioritise digitalisation in business and education as well as our nation’s talent – are critical steps forward for our nation’s economy,” Lian said.
The recently held Budget is expected to allocated RM 1 billion for the Industrial Digitalization Transformation schemes, RM150 million in grants for the SME Digitalization Grant Scheme and the Automation Grant, and RM1.2 billion for micro credit financing.
“The budget allocated will give more room for public and private partnership to create new business models whereby technology enhances existing ones to be more efficient and productivity, resulting in cost-savings and new revenue streams,” Lian said.
She further highlighted that IBM’s cloud solutions can provide SMEs the access to the capacity, security and services they need to keep their operations running.
Furthermore, Putrajaya’s investment of RM 1 billion under the Industrial Digitalisation Transformation Scheme is expected to have a transformative effect in the MSME segment as well.
“We partnered with MADX Panel, one of the leading Malaysian fintech software solutions company to implement IBM Cloud solutions to improve digital services for its micro, small and medium-sized enterprise (MSMEs) clients across Malaysia. Building and maintaining up-to-date digital infrastructure is critical for organizations to achieve higher levels of efficiency and agility especially in this challenging time,” Lian said.
The collaboration with IBM will enable MADX to enhance its digital capabilities and continue developing innovative products and services for its clients at a competitive cost.
“Due to rising demand for digital tools and processes, there is an urgent need for people to upskill themselves with knowledge of digital technologies coupled with digital literacy and transferable skills.”
IBM Malaysia has collaborated with more than ten public and private tertiary institutions to ensure the future of the workforce is ready including Brickfields Asia College to infuse the basic concepts of AI, blockchain, machine learning, security and various related domain into its curricula.
In 2019, the company partnered with the Ministry of Education and MDEC to launch P-TECH (The Pathways in Technology) programme to address the digital skills shortage in the country,
The programme is deigned the break the cycle of inequity in education and address skills gaps in the labour force by linking education and workforce development.
P-TECH students in Malaysia will be supported to complete a five-year structured programme at high school and in tertiary education.
“We will connect vocational colleges with industry professionals so our local talents will be equipped with the right skills training in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM),” Lian said.