by Kevin Chong
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Businesses closing because of MCO
Businesses closing because of MCO

More than 30,000 businesses already have folded up in Malaysia, while almost 100,000 jobs have been lost at year-end 2020, according to the Ministry of Entrepreneur Development & Cooperatives (MEDAC) and Social Security Organization (SOCSO) respectively. And here comes MCO 2.0 extension till the 18th of February 2021, bringing more uncertainties to the Malaysian economy.

‘Industry Unite’, a coalition consisting of more than 40 trade, business and professional associations in Malaysia, has gathered to voice out their concerns and urged the Government to hear them out as the extension of MCO 2.0 has caused many businesses and thousands of retail outlets to close down. The coalition led by Dato’ David Gurupatham & Datuk Irwin SW Cheong reiterated that a majority of the industry leaders would not be able to recover from the extension, and any possible recovery is further hindered by the lack of a clear path forward.

“These bi-weekly extensions do more harm than good. Businesses need to plan ahead, make vital decisions, retain or release staff, manage cash flow, gearing, etc. There is a serious lack of confidence in the business community,” the group said.

“The industry requires assistance from the Government in a moratorium on financial commitments, wages, subsidies, and more. The main issue to be addressed is a structured recovery plan with an emphasis on stricter compliance with SOPs through education, community engagement, and encouragement,” they added.

The group urges the Government to lift the MCO and work with them to deduce an immediate emergency plan to keep businesses afloat. They have proposed a 6-12 month stabilization plan and followed by a 3-year recovery plan.

Amongst the participating organizations represented under the ‘Industries Unite’ are Brandinging Association of Malaysia, Asian Oceania Computing Industry Association, Bumiputera Retailers Organization, Council of Asian Fashion Designers Malaysia, Malaysia Digital Chamber of Commerce, Malaysia Hairdressing Association, Malaysia Retail Chain Association, Malaysian Association of Travel & Tourism Agents, PIKOM, ALIFE, PUMM, SME Assosciation of Malaysia, Film Directors Association Malaysia, and many more.

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