KUALA LUMPUR: The government will continue to prioritise the Bumiputera economic empowerment agenda by providing various stimulus packages and recovery plans to assist them to survive and be competitive in the new normal, said Prime Minister

Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob. (pix)

This is to ensure Bumiputera entrepreneurs are able to be successful and help in restoring the national economy, he said.

The recently tabled Budget 2022, themed “Keluarga Malaysia, Makmur Sejahtera”, provides RM11.4 billion to implement various initiatives under the umbrella of Bumiputera development.

Of the amount, RM4.8 billion is set aside for various capacity building and funding programmes for businesses under Perbadanan Usahawan Nasional Bhd (PUNB), TEKUN Nasional and Dana Kemakmuran Bumiputera.

“I believe that through the allocation received, PUNB will strengthen its Bumiputera business development strategy in order to create resilient and progressive entrepreneurs who contribute to the national economic growth,” Ismail Sabri said in a pre-recorded video for the Ikon Inspirasi Impian ceremony organised by PUNB virtually today.

Ikon Inspirasi Impian, which is under the Maju Bersama PUNB campaign, was a virtual lecture programme in which three successful entrepreneurs shared their knowledge and offered inspiration to other Bumiputera entrepreneurs.

The prime minister also commended PUNB for assisting the government in empowering and assisting Bumiputera entrepreneurs and businesses to weather the pandemic by giving financing moratorium and business premises rental waiver in stages from April 2020 to December 2021.

“As entrepreneurs, the way forward is to use the latest technologies in business to increase productivity and ensure business stability, sustainability and competitiveness as well as borderless market opportunities,” he said.

As an example, he noted that Bumiputera company Bateriku (M) Sdn Bhd, which has received PUNB’s assistance, has shifted from being a conventional business to a fully digital platform by developing the Bateriku.Com mobile app and hence providing more job opportunities through the gig economy to Malaysians nationwide.

“This demonstrates that the current challenging business environment also requires entrepreneurs to be more creative and innovative in their product and service offerings.

“These two elements are critical to maintain the business brand in the market as well as boosting sales and customer confidence,” Ismail Sabri said.

He said Bumiputera entrepreneurs should follow the footsteps of food and beverage players who are always innovating to meet their customers’ current needs.

He added that they need to think outside of the box in order for their business to be competitive amid the challenging world.