MATRADE Advises SMEs To Pivot To Digitalise And Export For Survival

Close to 3,000 Malaysian enterprises gained export knowledge and tools to compete in the global trade arena following this year’s eNational Export Day ([email protected]). Hosted virtually by the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) over three days, [email protected] brought together public and private enterprises for a common purpose to reignite Malaysia’s exports and economic recovery.

“We are encouraged to hear that Malaysian companies have greatly benefitted from the various assistance programmes hosted by MATRADE. I urge companies to innovate, be flexible and get accustomed to transformation. Companies must be able to adapt to situational changes and adopt sustainable strategies to maintain relevancy in the global market,” said Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) Deputy Minister, YB Senator Datuk Lim Ban Hong.

“The pandemic has taught us a hard lesson, that agility and resilience are of utmost importance. Technology has become even more important and is a vital tool that we can bank on to expedite business recovery.  eNED is a testament of our commitment in digitalisation of trade promotion and development activities. More needs to be done, so we already have lined up programmes to facilitate Malaysian companies’ exporting activities for the rest of the year,” said MATRADE Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Mohd Mustafa Abdul Aziz, during the wrap up session of the [email protected]

Dialogues between industry leaders and enterprises at the [email protected] also discussed on digitalisation and sustainable development, two important export agendas for Malaysia. The session on digitalisation through adoption of e-commerce offered participants with practical ideas and tactics to optimise the use of e-commerce to accelerate speed to market products and services across borders.

The US-China trade conflict was another hot topic discussed at the [email protected]. The panellists shared about the opportunities arising from the conflict and how Malaysian companies should leverage on those opportunities to stay ahead of competitors.

MATRADE’s Trade Commissioners based in key markets such as Indonesia, Philippines, Japan, Korea and Australia deliberated on the topic of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement as a catalyst for growth. Malaysian companies are advised to develop a good understanding of the RCEP provisions and trade requirements in order to reap its benefits.  RCEP is the biggest trade bloc accounting for 30% of the world’s GDP.

An [email protected] participant, Mr. Haniff Ghazali who is also the Honorary Secretary of Malaysia Rail Industry Corporation (MARIC), echoed discussions at [email protected] on leveraging free trade agreements. He hoped to see an economic bubble that will enable its member companies to export aggressively into zones that are low-risk and even free from COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition, Mr. Andy Lim, Senior Marketing Executive from Kuala Lumpur Fried Chicken (M) Sdn Bhd, commended MATRADE’s efforts in helping Malaysian SMEs to export. He said the panel discussion on ‘Digitalisation: Beyond Pandemic: Maximising E-Commerce Opportunities’ at the [email protected] has provided him with a wider and clearer picture of the whole exporting process through e-commerce.  “This was very useful to us as the company is currently exploring to venture into export business”, said Mr. Andy.

MATRADE attributed the success of [email protected] and its ability to continue improving its services and facilities to the continuous support and feedback from participants and the business community, which in turn benefit the SMEs and exporters towards reviving and sustaining their exports in the longer term.  Following-up on the success of [email protected], a series of dedicated programmes are scheduled to be carried out to further boost export penetration rates among local enterprises.

MATRADE will tap on its synergy with technology partner, Google Malaysia, and prominent player in Islamic finance, Bank Islam Malaysia Berhad (BIMB), in the areas of digitalisation and financing respectively to accelerate exports.  Malaysian companies are encouraged to register as MATRADE members to pursue their export journey to the next level with ongoing export enrichment programmes comprising webinars, training, customised export nurturing initiatives and business matching programmes.

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