We are all familiar with the current situation in Malaysia. We all know it as the “New Malaysia”. No, we are not going to talk about politics so please stay. The “New Malaysia” does not just mean a new political party though, it also means new opportunities; for Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) especially.
SMEs, if you know your economics, are a very big part of a country’s economic system. They can be the very bloodline that energizes up to 80% of the country’s economy and income. Plenty of these SMEs in Malaysia actually does plenty of great things that can be exported outside of Malaysia. That is where organisations like Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) exists in the first place; to help these SMEs grow outside of the local context.
They are not the only ones who sees great potential in Malaysians economic prowess and its SMEs though. Facebook and AVANA thinks that there is great potential here too. That is how the collaboration that is known to be “Made by Malaysian, Loved by the World” initiative, or #MadeByMalaysia Programme starts.
The programme is designed to help and empower over 2,000 businesses in Malaysia to equip them with the tools to export their products. That is not all though, with Facebook and AVANA’s collaboration the initiative is supposed to equip businesses with digital and online capabilities for their external growth benefits. In some sense the programme is designed to train SMEs across Malaysia gain some very important digital marketing skills to further grow their businesses beyond the Malaysian borders.
MATRADE through this programme also looks to strengthen awareness to its eTRADE programme that gives out MYR5,000 financial assistance to SMEs for the. The money is of course to be used in “Made by Malaysia, Loved by the World” Programme.
One particular sector that the collaboration is looking at or hope to boost is the e-commerce sector. The e-commerce sector has shown very encouraging growth for the past five years and they are still expecting it to grow in the coming years. e-commerce is also one major way that sellers from Malaysia can reach out to potential buyers across nations, South East Asia specifically.
Of course with 641 million potential buyers, it is a huge market to tap into. Not to forget among these 641 million of population there are 400 million people who are subscribed to mobile plan. About 370 million of these people have internet. More than 150 million of them owns smartphones. These numbers are just going to keep increasing in the coming years.
This much is clear though, e-commerce is still at its infancy in South East Asia and it is still growing at a tremendous pace. Malaysia is in a prime position to pick up the growth and benefit from it. That is also why Facebook and AVANA comes in with #MadeByMalaysia to help SMEs in Malaysia.
The involvement of Facebook and AVANA aims to help Malaysian SMEs to reach out to the 2.2 billion users of Facebook; all of these are beyond the South East Asian borders. Malaysia is also only the third country that launched this programme with Facebook after succesful runs in South Korea and Taiwan, both of which are current economic giants.
Facebook and AVANA will look to equip SMEs with all the know-how of running social media marketing and digital marketing. That will help these SMEs reach out potential foreign markets and global audiences. MATRADE’s involvement in this contributes to the SMEs access to whatever financial assistance from MATRADE’s eTRADE programme for the purpose of export.
Also published on Medium.