An entrepreneurNCER programme has been introduced under the Northern Corridor Economic Region (NCER) Integrated Human Capital Programme with the purpose of assisting micro-entrepreneurs, as well as Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), to help maintain both the relevancy and sustainability of their businesses, in news reported by Bernama.
Financial Schemes Through Strategic Partnerships to Nuture Small Businesses
Under the entrepreneurNCER programme, micro-entrepreneurs and SMEs are offered financing schemes through strategic partnerships with Maybank and Agrobank, as well as given guidance.
One of the participants in the programme, Mohd Subhi Musa, 39, who runs a rubber collection centre, said he was able to make good use of the funding assistance as capital for his business by buying scrap rubber from smallholders in large quantities.
“Before joining the programme in 2019, I was only able to buy the scrap rubber between 30 to 33 tons a day, but after getting the funding assistance, I am now able to buy more than 50 tons a day,” he commented.
Mohd Subhi, who opened the Rubber Collection Centre in 2011, said his ability to buy scrap rubber in large quantities also enabled more than 100 smallholders in the Padang Terap district to earn more income through their sale of the rubber.
“It also enables me to provide better prices for the smallholders,” he said, adding that he now has 12 employees to assist him at the collection centre.
Another participant, Burhan Hassan, 50, who runs the Tire and Auto Service Centre, said the funding assistance provided under the programme had enabled him to improve and expand his business.
“Through the funding assistance, I was able to open another branch in Kepala Batas, near Alor Setar in 2021, hence providing job opportunities for he locals there.”
Burhan, who started the business in 2006, said he now has three Tire and Auto Service Centres, including a second branch in Pokok Sena which was opened in 2018, and in total has 14 workers at the three premises.
Meanwhile, NCER, in a statement, said a total of 8,927 micro, small and medium enterprises in Kedah had benefitted from the financing scheme under the entrepreneurNCER programme involving a total loan of RM 101.8 million since 2019.
It also said another 22,500 micro, small and medium entrepreneurs in NCER are expected to benefit from the programme under the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP) with the involvement of CIMB and AFFIN Bank as new strategic partners of the Northern Corridor Implementation Authority (NCIA) beginning this year.