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MATRADE plans to drive exports for SMEs and MTCS

Wan Latiff: Matrade has planned 11 export acceleration missions abroad this year. We will go in small groups consisting of 10 to 15 companies based on sectors

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysia External Trade Development Corp (Matrade) wants to drive the exports of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and mid-tier companies (MTCs).

This is to meet the government’s projection for exports to reach RM1.118 trillion by 2020, and to sustain trade surplus of RM118.4bil during the period.

The trade promotion organisation is targeting to improve the performance of 22,592 established exporters and potential exporters in diversified sectors through its 478 programmes this year.

Of the exporters registered with Matrade, 87% are small and medium enterprises (companies with annual turnover below RM50mil) while the rest are MTCs (manufacturing companies with annual revenue between RM50mil and RM500mil, and services companies whose annual revenue is between RM20mil and RM500mil).

Matrade deputy chief executive officer Datuk Wan Latiff Wan Musa said 41 export promotions and 437 exporter development activities have been identified to assist the exporters throughout the year.

The export promotions would be conducted through trade fairs, export acceleration missions and international sourcing programmes.

Matrade is scheduled to showcase Malaysia’s quality products and capabilities at local and international trade events such as the Malaysia International Halal Showcase (KL), Arab Health (Dubai), Gulfood (Dubai), International Food and Beverage Exhibition (Japan), Worldbex (the Philippines), Canton Fair (China), Offshore Technology Conference (the United States), International Transformation Asia-Pacific (Singapore), K2019 (Germany), Anuga (Germany), and World of Private Label (the Netherlands).

“We have planned 11 export acceleration missions abroad this year. We will go in small groups consisting of 10 to 15 companies based on sectors,” said Wan Latiff.

Matrade would bring local companies on such missions to India and Bangladesh (chemicals and chemical products), Ghana and Nigeria (oil, gas and energy), France (aerospace), Japan (game) and Vietnam (automotive industry), among others.

In addition, foreign buyers would be invited to trade fairs here to meet Malaysian companies, under the International Sourcing Programme (INSP), he said, adding that there are several INSP programmes relating to the green products, furniture, halal, healthcare, aerospace, construction-related products and services sectors.

As for exporter development activities, there will be the eTrade (adoption of e-commerce with one-time financial aid of RM5,000); Go-Ex (Going Exports, a customised programme for SMEs to venture into the international market with RM50,000 financial aid); bumiputra, women and youth exporters development programme; mid-tier companies development programme; as well as seminars, workshops, training and other outreach events.

“We find that there are many established exporters and potential exporters whose performance could be improved through our programmes,” said Wan Latiff.

Currently, the largest representation of exporters is from Selangor (45.3%), followed by Kuala Lumpur (21.5%), Johor (9.1%), Penang (7.3%) and Perak (4.1%).

In the product sector, the top five exporters are involved in prepared food (14.4%); followed by pharmaceutical, toiletries and cosmetics (9.3%); beverages (8.2%); furniture (7.5%); and building, construction materials and hardware (6.5%).

In the services sector, the top five exporters are involved in information and communications technology, or ICT (18.6%); business (14.6%); engineering (9.5%); distribution and logistics (8.7%); and construction and related services (7.4%).

The top five major export sectors are electrical and electronic products; petroleum products; chemicals and chemical products; palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products; and manufacture of metal – all of which contributed 60.6% of total exports between January and November last year.

The top five major export markets are China, Singapore, the United States, Hong Kong and Japan, which took 51.2% of total exports between January and November last year.


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