7 types of financial support for Malaysian SMEs and startups to cushion the impact of Covid-19

The Malaysian economy continues to suffer losses as the movement control order extends until 14 April 2020 (Source: Internet)

The Covid-19 outbreak has put the world on a halt especially economically as most businesses are forced to shut down operations to contain the virus spread. Understanding how the economy must continue to run in order to avoid the nation’s financial collapse, as more than 80% businesses in Malaysia are of Small Medium Entreprises (SMEs), the Malaysian government introduced the emergency stimulus package to enable businesses and domestic investments. 

1.Easy loan scheme from the Central Bank of Malaysia (BNM)

BNM has announced a total of RM3.3 billion to assist SMEs with their business operations, employee welfare and domestic investments. This fund can be applied online via http://imsme.com.my and will be channelled through financial institutions, comprising commercial banks, Islamic banks and development financial institutions regulated by BNM. For more information, visit: www.bnm.gov.my or call 1-300-88-5465. 

2. Loan restructuring and rescheduling

Financial institutions in Malaysia have been asked to allow flexibility to their customers by offering loan restructuring and rescheduling options to relieve their burden due to the economic slowdown following the quarantine. For more information, refer to this FAQ

3. Tax exemptions and deferments

Businesses related to the tourism and hospitality industry including hotels, airlines and travel agencies will be given deferment of tax installments for six months starting 1 April 2020. 

Organisations that contribute to combatting the outbreak for example by giving cash donations, medical equipment, medicines and so on are also given tax exemption. 

The incentive is also given to port operators for machinery and equipment used in port operations. 

4. Small scale government projects

The government has allocated RM2 billion for small-scale contractors to complete various infrastructure projects at the federal, state and local government levels. The projects include maintenance works on roads, drainage and piping system, water supplies, bridges and so on. 

5.Fund to empower talent pool

RM100 million has been allocated to help businesses affected by the outbreak to upgrade their talentpool for sectors such as hospitality, retails and manufacturing. An additional RM70 million is also provided to finance short courses to upgrade their skills for example digital marketing skills to assist businesses to continue to run. 

6. Funding for Startups

The government and private sector are working together to provide about RM500 million worth of funding for startups to grow their business and operations. 

7. SME digitalisation and automation

SMEs may also apply for loans to help them digitalise their business through purchasing of hardware and software, IT solutions and services and special equipment. The loan allocated is RM300 million and eligible SMEs may receive up to RM3 million with the tenure offered up to 10 years. The Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) partners with 80 tech firms to launch #DigitalVsCovid to mitigate the impact from Covid-19.  Visit https://mdec.my/home/c19techrelief/ to access the full list. 

For further information on the Stimulus Package, kindly call the hotline: 03-88829089 / 03-88829087 / 03-88829191 or send your enquiries via Telegram: https://t.me/MOFPRE2020

The announcement on loan restructuring and rescheduling by all financial institutions regulated by BNM will ease the burden on Malaysian SMEs and individuals. 

Source: Bank Negara Malaysia