8 October 2022
AmBank: Budget 2023 aims at strengthening foundation to drive socio-economic development
AMMB Holdings Bhd’s group CEO Datuk Sulaiman Mohd Tahir said the government’s establishment of a RM10 billion fund via Bank Negara to support the automation and digitalisation of SMEs as well as the tourism and agriculture sectors is indeed timely and necessary. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 8 — Focusing on economic recovery and fiscal responsibility, Budget 2023 is aimed at strengthening the foundation to drive the nation’s socio-economic development and is indeed reflective of the government’s commitment to the well-being of the people.
AMMB Holdings Bhd’s (AmBank) group chief executive officer (CEO) Datuk Sulaiman Mohd Tahir said this is in tandem with ensuring Malaysia’s stability amidst continued headwinds in the current economic landscape.
“AmBank is pleased to contribute to the government’s continued support for the growth of small and medium enterprises (SMEs), which are key contributors to the Malaysian economy.
“SMEs will certainly be able to benefit from the increased allocations and incentives, namely Semarak Niaga Keluarga Malaysia 2023, to RM45 billion encompassing direct loans, alternative financing and financial guarantees,” he said in a statement today.
Alongside this, he said, creating greater access to financing for SMEs, Syarikat Jaminan Pembiayaan Perniagaan will increase the guarantee limit to up to RM9 billion for SMEs, which will serve to drive further contribution to Malaysia’s economy.
In addition, the initiative to reduce taxable income for micro SMEs certainly bodes well, particularly within this challenging environment where many businesses are still recovering from the pandemic and are straddled with cash flow issues, Sulaiman said.
To continue unlocking growth potential and transform as future-ready businesses, he said it is also vital that SMEs embrace digitalisation while tapping sectors with strong prospects.
In line with this, he said the government’s establishment of a RM10 billion fund via Bank Negara to support the automation and digitalisation of SMEs as well as the tourism and agriculture sectors is indeed timely and necessary.
He added that as environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards continue to gain prominence in the international arena, the RM1 billion allocation under the Low Carbon Transition Financing Fund for SMEs will help to strengthen business resilience and sustainability while contributing to Malaysia’s aspirations towards net zero emissions.
Meanwhile, Affin Bank Bhd CEO Datuk Wan Razly Wan Abdullah is of the view that Budget 2023 is expansionary, well-balanced and aimed towards sustaining the country’s economic recovery momentum from Covid-19 against the backdrop of sluggish global economic growth and other external headwinds.
The more comprehensive and expanded direct cash assistance amounting to a total of RM10 billion under Bantuan Keluarga Malaysia and Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat will enable the targeted group to meet its most pressing needs according to priorities, while also creating multiplier effects in the local economy, he said.
“We applaud the RM200 million allocation by the government, which among other things will be utilised to promote and market our tourism industry, especially as international travel is expected to be on the rise with borders reopening across the globe.
“The growth of our tourism industry will in turn spur more demand for our local goods and services,” he said.
The various assistance for the SMEs will further boost their ongoing recovery efforts and ensure their place in the mainstream of socio-economic developments, he noted.
He added Affin Bank remained confident in the resilience of the Malaysian economy to weather any challenges and will continue to play its part to help maintain a vibrant business environment that will form a foundation for a more sustainable economic growth. — Bernama