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Friday, November 9, 2007

Asean best choice for SMEs to start exporting

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia External Trade Development Corp (Matrade) considers Asean as the best choice for local small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which intend to start exporting.

Chief executive officer Datuk Noharuddin Nordin said SMEs should not to be too ambitious and should try to explore the markets within the region first.

“This is because geographically it is closer, which means cheaper shipment cost for them and lower travelling cost to meet potential clients,” he told StarBiz.

“Secondly, the culture of doing business is similar with Malaysia’s although our language and culture might be different.

Datuk Noharuddin Nordin
“Finally, we also have the privilege of the Asean Free Trade Area whereby we get preferential access to these markets.”

As the national export promotion agency, he said Matrade would plan various programmes and activities to assist local companies, particularly SMEs, a year ahead to venture into the world markets.

“This is in line with the objective to assist those which are keen to globalise their business operations systematically,” he said, adding that it would also try to identify potential overseas markets for local companies.

Noharuddin said Matrade would next year organise 224 programmes and activities, such as international trade fairs, marketing missions, specialised marketing missions (exhibitions to promote Malaysian services), trade promotion visits and incoming buying missions (exhibitions in Malaysia).

He said so far in 2007, more than 3,500 SMEs had benefited from various Matrade programmes. From January to October, Matrade had organised 30 training programmes for Malaysian exporters and would-be exporters. A total of 2,490 participants from 1,856 companies attended.

By The Star (By

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