KUCHING – Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) has assisted 1,042 financially-distressed small and medium enterprises (SMEs) with the financing value worth RM1.3 billion since 2005.
Its Director of Development Finance and Enterprise, Marina Abdul Kahar said the assistance was channelled through BNM’s Small Debt Resolution Scheme (SDRS), which was introduced in 2005.
“Of the total number of SMEs assisted, 56 per cent were able to revive their business, and 73 per cent had their debts fully settled,” she told reporters here on the sidelines of BNM’s Financial Carnival here, yesterday.
The three-day event beginning yesterday served as a one-stop platform providing a unique opportunity for residents and the business community to increase their knowledge on financial services, financial management literacy and consumer protection provided for by the industry.
Marina said SMEs involved in services and manufacturing were the two largest sectors that benefitted from the SDRS.
Besides the SDRS, she said an online SME financing application platform is expected to be launched by year-end to further enhance SMEs access to financing.
“The platform allows SMEs to submit simultaneous applications to multiple financial institutions based on their eligibility.
“They will get an immediate feedback on their application status via the online platform,” she said, adding that 12 financial institutions and ministries have indicated their support for this initiative.
Calling on SMEs to ensure that the loans are used for business purposes and to make prompt repayment, she said: “They should also align their businesses with current environment, such as riding on the mega trend of automation and adopting digital payment to reduce their operational cost.”