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PENJANA brings relief to various sectors, gives breathing space to industry players



KUALA LUMPUR: The National Economic Recovery Plan (PENJANA) announced yesterday has given various sectors much-needed assistance in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, with several industry players describing it as having given them some breathing space.

Fourty initiatives worth RM35 billion were announced, focusing on unemployment, hotel and tourism issues, e-commerce campaigns and financing for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

Talking to Bernama, Persatuan Tunas Usahawan Nasional (Pertunas) president, Amir Hakimin Che Razali described yesterday’s announcement by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as giving an extra boost to the digital economy growth among SME entrepreneurs in the country.

He said it was in line with the new normal post COVID-19 to ensure that the SME sector continues to maximise the use of digital technology and keeps abreast of the latest trends to stay competitive.

The plan allocates RM700 million in loans and matching grants to SME entrepreneurs, namely RM100 million SME Digital Matching Grants, RM500 million under the SME Technology Transformation Fund and a RM100 million Smart Automation Grant.

Commenting on the additional allocation of RM5 billion for the Wage Subsidy programme, Hotel Royal Guest House (RGH) director, Raja Rusmin Raja Mahmud said, it was good news for hoteliers and tour agency operators who were adversely affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

“The outbreak had a significant impact on the tourism industry throughout the Movement Control Order (MCO) period enforced by the government since March as rooms and hotel halls could not be fully utilised.

“To address the issue of laying off workers, RGH permitted 18 of its workers with the salary of RM1,200 per month to take unpaid leave and they are being paid RM600 a month through the Wage Subsidy programme after it was announced recently,” Raja Rusmin said when contacted here today.

The Prime Minister also announced an additional funding of RM2 billion through PENJANA SME Financing Scheme which will be offered through the banking sector.

In addition, the government will establish the PENJANA Micro Financing, in collaboration with Bank Simpanan Nasional and TEKUN Nasional for micro-enterprises, with an allocation of RM400 million, of which RM50 million will be allotted for women entrepreneurs.

Welcoming the announcement, Johor Selatan SME Association advisor Teh Kee Sin said it was what the SME entrepreneurs and micro enterprises really needed to stay afloat and he was hopeful that the application procedure could be further scrutinised by the government to speed up the process.

— BERNAMA





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