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Malaysia pushing for Asean SME bank

[ 24-11-2015 ]
Malaysia pushing for Asean SME bank

Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah says not all Asean countries provide financial aid to small businesses like Malaysia. – The Malaysian Insider pic, November 22, 2015.Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah says not all Asean countries provide financial aid to small businesses like Malaysia. – The Malaysian Insider pic, November 22, 2015.

Malaysia is pushing for the setting up of the Asean SME Bank in the quest to assist small and medium enterprises from Asean member states, Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah said.

He said the proposal, which was received by Malaysia as Asean chairman, was being deliberated by the regional grouping.

Many entrepreneurs, particularly small and medium enterprises (SMEs), from the 10 Asean members states are deprived of loans due to lack of financing facilities, he added.

"We hope that every country in Asean would agree to its (Asean SME Bank) formation for (the benefit of) entrepreneurs in respective countries," he told reporters at a Deepavali celebration for the Tambun parliamentary constituency in Ipoh today.

Ahmad Husni said not all countries in Asean provided financial aid to small businesses like Malaysia.

"During my travel, I notice that in some Asean countries, they have the products, but they were in rural areas. They do not have the funding.

"They do not have micro-credit schemes like Tekun or BSN that has about 5,000 banking agents in rural areas (throughout Malaysia)," he said.

Admitting that the Asean banking integration is rather slow, he said, adding that, "Although Asean is one of the strongest regions in terms of growth, with (GDP) growth of nearly five per cent, yet we have not achieved full integration of the banking system.

"If we can achieve full integration, the number of middle-income earners would be bigger as we have bigger market," he said. – Bernama, November 22, 2015.