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Rural hawkers, small trader community needs the same advocacy

7 December 2023

By Nabalu News Journalist

PENAMPANG: There must be a significant shift, especially in providing opportunities, spaces, and comfortable facilities for traders throughout the capital city.

"Our inhabited city should be beautiful and clean, not just for buildings, conglomerates, and banks, but also for the hawkers and small traders who also need to be equipped with basic facilities."

The Prime Minister Datuk Anwar Ibrahim said this during a National Hawker and Small Trader event in Putrajaya last year.

In today's National Hawker and Small Trader Carnival 2023 (HPPK) the Minister of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperative (MEDC) Datuk Ewon Benedick said the commitment of the Prime Minister in advocating for the fate of the hawker and small trader community is evident through the substantial allocation for the provision of hawker kiosks implemented by the Ministry of Local Government Development.

"I am confident that many hawkers have benefited from the implementation of this allocation,"he said.

"However, the hawker and small trader community in rural areas also require the same advocacy," he added.

Accordingly to him, they carried out their businesses in traditional markets, weekly markets, and roadside locations, which undoubtedly require better stall facilities and village markets.

"Therefore, we at MEDAC have proposed the Village Market project to the Ministry of Finance during the budget preparation session to ensure the provision and upgrading of entrepreneurial stall facilities in the 2024 Budget," he said.

He expressed his gratitude to the Prime Minister for approving a budget allocation of RM20 million in the 2024 Budget for the purpose.

He requested the Prime Minister for MEDC to implement this allocation as proposed and to ensure that the same provision is made in the budget every year so that MEDC can help fulfill the hopes and dreams of the hawker and small trader community, who not only need credit capital loans but also stall facilities from this Ministry.

This year, MEDAC has also introduced the Strategic Plan for the Development of Hawkers and Small Traders, the Informal Entrepreneur Formalisation Plan, and the Home-Based Business Guidelines as initiatives to enhance the competitiveness of the hawker and small trader community, he said adding that MEDC has reactivated the National Consultative Council for Hawkers and Small Traders as a platform for engagement and collaboration between the Government and this community.

As such he requests for the Prime Minister's support for these MEDC initiatives with a development allocation of RM2 million for the affairs of hawkers and small traders.

" Although the portfolio for hawkers and small traders has been transferred from Demestic Trade Ministry to MEDC in the previous administration, this transfer has not been accompanied by the budgetary support, which has been a major challenge every time the Ministry's staff and I have to address 0the issues, challenges, needs, and expectations of the hawker and small trader community," he said.

Meanwhile, the carnival today showed an encouraging start with more than 6000 people visiting by 1pm. The targetted crowd was from 30,000 to 50,000 for the three day event.


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