: The Prihatin Package for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) (Additional Measures) should enable SMEs to retain their employees, depending on the speed of economic recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Kuala Lumpur Malay Chamber of Commerce (KLMCC) honorary treasurer Norhisham Abdul Mutalib said however, those who do not meet the eligibility requirements might not be able to get the assistance from the government.
"Overall, the measures announced are commendable, rather than not getting any help at all. Nonetheless, SMEs may want to pay closer attention to the Employee Insurance System (EIS), as some have taken it for granted," he told Bernama
Meanwhile, on the Prihatin Special Grant that is expected to benefit 700,000 micro-SMEs, Norhisham said it is a positive move, but noted that not all SMEs are registered with the Inland Revenue Board (LHDN).
"Some had not even registered during the Goods and Services Tax implementation because they were cautious and wanted to study the details and mechanism of the tax system," said Norhisham.
Since the Prihatin package requires the SMEs to be registered with the Companies Commission of Malaysia, LHDN and local authorities to be eligible for the aids, this would inadvertently create awareness among SMEs on the importance of declaring their business income and paying their taxes accordingly, he said,
On another note, Norhisham said the government's move to consider implementing various initiatives for startups is also something that the chamber is looking forward to, as it could be a game changer for the country.
"As we all know, this COVID-19 is changing the entire business landscape and ecosystem.
"With the Industrial Revolution 4.0 in play, we think it will be a new frontier after this, in terms of exponential growth and the Blue Ocean strategy," he added.