SME Corp spent RM217.33m on tech-related programmes in 2018

SME Corp spent RM217.33m on tech-related programmes in 2018

KUALA LUMPUR: SME Corporation Malaysia (SME Corp) spent RM217.33 million to implement 28 innovation and technology- related programmes in 2018, benefiting 37,429 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), said Chief Executive Officer Noor Azmi Mat Said.

He said the programmes were under the Innovation and Technology Adoption initiative outlined in SME Corp’s annual SME Integrated Plan of Action (SMEIPA) report.

“Based on our SMEIPA report for 2018, 151 SME development programmes were planned and 613,576 SMEs are expected to have benefited from it,” he said in his speech at the launch of the “SME Digitalisation Whitepaper” here, today.

Citing SME Corp’s latest survey, Noor Azmi said the finding showed that out of 1,469 SME respondents, only 32 per cent were aware of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0), while 69 per cent indicated that they were ready for its implementation.

“Meanwhile, 62 per cent said they lacked knowledge and skills, and 45 per cent said there was a lack of funding and support,” he said.

He hoped, therefore, the 2019 Budget allocation of RM7.12 billion for various initiatives to support Industry 4.0 and digitalisation would provide the necessary support for SMEs to embark on the journey.

The whitepaper is the first milestone in the collaboration between SME Corp and Huawei Technologies (M) Sdn Bhd (Huawei Malaysia) as part of the deliverables under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in November 2017.

In June this year, SME Corp and Huawei Malaysia sponsored a study on 2,033 SMEs across all regions and sectors – including services, manufacturing, construction and agriculture – to explore the state of adoption of information and communications technology.

The study also aimed to examine the drivers and barriers of digital transformation through the lens of SMEs in Malaysia, and involved a survey by the International Data Corporation and a consortium of universities in Malaysia. – Bernama