Malaysia: SMEs expect to recover by Spring

Malaysia: SMEs expect to recover by Spring
More than two-thirds of SMEs in Malaysia expect their businesses to recover from the effects of the pandemic by April this year, according to a Mastercard Impact Study.

The study of 452 small business owners, conducted at the end of 2020, found that 80% have sufficient resources to see out the rest of 2021.

“The study found positive levels of optimism among Malaysia’s SMEs. This optimism has been hard-earned as many businesses have been continuously taking proactive measures to protect against the shocks of the pandemic,” Mastercard said.

The survey also found that 31% of Malaysian SMEs are making investments to ensure that they are prepared for an economic turnaround.

Over the course of the pandemic, 21% established an online presence for their business and 39% enhanced an existing online operation in order to better reach customers.
One-fifth to one-third of the firms surveyed – depending on their industry – said that their operations had returned to pre-pandemic levels, with the manufacturing sector seeing the strongest return. “This is despite the fact that Malaysian small businesses are facing what is perhaps their greatest economic challenge since the Asian financial crisis of 1997,” Mastercard said.

In terms of support from financial institutions, 85% of the respondents felt that assistance from banks has been either ‘good’ or ‘excellent’.