: Creative industry players lauded the government’s plan to further boost the growth of animation, film, design, culture and heritage fields through a RM100 million allocation to the Content Industry Development Fund, under the purview of under the purview of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).
The allocation, announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak during the tabling of Budget 2015, is on top of a RM200 million funding given to MyCreative Ventures in 2012 for the development of creative industry.
“I’m happy with the announcement. Next, we need to focus on identifying what to do with the RM100 million and areas to be focused on, for the next one to two years,” said Animonsta Studios Sdn Bhd Managing Director Mohd Nizam Abd Razak at a Budget 2015 post discussion on Astro AWANI, Saturday.
The latest initiative by the government is a positive development but funding alone, he said, is not sufficient to ensure a continuous development of the industry.
“When we look at success stories, Malaysia has produced Intellectual Property (IPs) that is regionally recognised. However, we have yet to reach the A-class, or international levels. This requires more than just funding; we also need help in market access.”
Animonsta Studios, which makes the popular local animated series ‘BoBoiBoy’ has developed a strong foothold in Asia. Nizam aims to bring the brand to Europe and Middle East markets.
“Some of our local brands had made it big in Asia. The question now is how do you export it globally? How can we further elevate our local content?”
MCMC Chairman Dato’ Mohamed Sharil Tarmizi said the funding proves that the government is committed to pushing the local digital content industry at the global stage.
“The move is in line with our latest initiative - the KL Converge conference and expo. We featured the potential of local regional talents by creating a platform to consolidate ideas and digital content distribution,” he said in a statement on Friday.
Meanwhile, President Malaysian Mobile Content Provider Association (MMCP) Johary Mustapha views the funding as a boost to the mobile content industry.
“More exposure has to be on mobile segment. We product a lot of content and animation but for 2014 and beyond, we must look into how mobile can play a more important role, especially in helping the young people," he said.
He also lauded the government’s move to increase the capacity of high-speed broadband by building 1,000 new telecommunication towers and laying undersea cables, at a cost of RM2.7 billion over the next three years.
Meanwhile, speaking on initiatives to strengthen local entrepreneurs globally, Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre (MaGIC) CEO Cheryl Yeoh opined that local entrepreneurs can benefit from being strategically positioned in the region to take on a bigger market.
“In South East Asia alone, we have some 600 million people. That is a huge market. The key is to encourage Malaysian entrepreneurs to go beyond being just a ‘jaguh kampung’.
“For example, use our capability in Bahasa Malaysia to tap into the Indonesian market with a population of 300 million. In the halal industry, no one has really dominated the market, especially in e-commerce. Foreigners are coming to Malaysia to set up their halal businesses,” said Cheryl.
She is happy that eligible expatriate Start-up entrepreneurs will be given a work pass for one, with the paid-up capital for Start-up companies set at RM75,000, under another initiative announced in Budget 2015.