MEDC introduces two new schemes
18 November 2023
By Nabalu News Journalist
PENAMPANG: The Ministry of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives (MEDC) will introduce two new schemes to further enhance entrepreneurship and cooperative development in the country.
It's minister Datuk Ewon Benedick, stated that the two new schemes are the Craft Entrepreneur Financing Scheme implemented by TEKUN Nasional and the Tourism Cooperative Stimulus Program to be implemented by the Malaysian Cooperative Commission.
Regarding the craft entrepreneur scheme, Ewon stated that the financing provided will be up to a maximum of RM100,000 for micro and small entrepreneurs in the craft arts, batik clothing, handicrafts, souvenirs, and craft-related industries.
"The Minister of Tourism, Datuk Tiong King Sing and I, have discussed how we can boost the craft and batik industry among small entrepreneurs. We agreed that a financing scheme should be introduced specifically for this purpose.
"Prime Minister, Dato' Seri Anwar Ibrahim, as the Minister of Finance, announced during the presentation of the 2024 Budget a programme to assist craft and batik entrepreneurs. Therefore, this scheme will be launched in the near future," he said.
Meanwhile, regarding the tourism cooperative stimulus package, Ewon stated that MEDC, through the Malaysian Cooperative Commission (SKM), has allocated RM2 million to support the development of the tourism sector through financing incentives for homestay accommodations, village stays, and guesthouses operated by tourism cooperatives.
"Under this programme, we will provide financing for a portion of the accommodation packages offered by tourism cooperatives. This means that tourists will pay a lower price when visiting and staying at homestays, village stays, and guesthouses owned by tourism cooperatives.
"I believe this programme will benefit rural tourism cooperatives and serve as an initial contribution towards Visit Malaysia 2026, encouraging tourists to also visit cooperative-owned tourism centers that offer accommodation packages. I plan to launch this program in Sabah early next year," he said.
Ewon made these remarks while delivering a speech at the opening ceremony of the Traditional Embroidery Workshop, jointly organised by the Unduk Ngadau Sabah Association (PUNS) and SIDMA College, held here today.
Regarding the workshop, Ewon expressed his hopes that the participants would become entrepreneurs specialising in traditional clothing or related services associated with the ethnic traditional attire of Sabah.
Under various schemes through MEDC agencies, workshop participants who run businesses in this service can apply for financing.
Moreover, if any entrepreneur wants to develop their business through the acquisition of machinery, automation, and digitisation to improve productivity, we have also launched the Bumiputera Enterprise Enhancement Program (BEEP) Plus grant scheme for Sabah and Sarawak Bumiputera entrepreneurs through the agency SME Corp for this purpose.
"This workshop is important for passing down knowledge and skills in traditional embroidery to the younger generation, but as the Minister of Entrepreneur Development, I want to see workshop participants become real entrepreneurs and visit MEDC agencies to obtain related services or financing," he said.
Through his special allocation, Ewon has provided a grant of RM20,000 for PUNS activities this year and has agreed to double the amount of the grant next year so that the association can organize entrepreneurship and education programme, especially for women.-