TAMPARULI: The Sabah Ministry of Trade and Industry aims to create 600,000 job opportunities by 2023, under the small and medium enterprises (SME) sector.
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal said the SME sector is the ‘heart and pulse’ of the state’s economic ecosystem as it covers over 99 per cent of the business entities in Sabah and it contributes roughly 36.3 per cent to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
“The SME sector also roughly provides 65 per cent of the total job opportunities in Malaysia. In Sabah, the SME sector had provided 450,000 job opportunities in 2015.
“As the country heads into 2023, the SME sector under the leadership of the Ministry of Trade and Industry hopes to provide 600,000 job opportunities,” Shafie said in his speech read by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk
Seri Panglima Wilfred Madius Tangau at the launching of the Sabah Small Industry Festival (FIKS) in Tamparuli yesterday.
Shafie added that the new State Government led by Warisan, Pakatan Harapan and Upko will ensure that Sabahans from all walks of life would be able to benefit from the administration of this new government.
In conjunction with launching of FIKS, yesterday’s ceremony also witnessed the launching of the One District One Small Industry (OD1SI), an initiative that aims
to improve the state’s SME sector.
OD1SY will adopt a three-pronged approach, which comprises of the launching of FIKS (which will be launched in every district); the implementation of the District Flagship Product, whereby the cluster product of a district will be cultivated based on the district’s own resources; and the formation of a coordinating committee that will be headed by Tangau, who is the State Minister of Trade and Industry.
It is understood that FIKS will be used as a platform for showcasing, business matching, business networking and business sharing for the SME owners.
In this regard, Shafie has urged all Sabahans to utilise this opportunity provided by the new State Government, regardless of the size of their business.
Among those present in the event were Minister of Law and Native Affairs Datuk Aidi Moktar, Minister of Rural Development Dr Ewon Benedick and Industrial Development and Research Department director Patrick Tan.