PPP essential for SME growth: MIPR

Posted on  10/05/2012  |  Media Centre

By Danial Norjidi

Public-Private Partnership (PPP) will be essential in helping the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources (MIPR) further enhance its internal strength with regard to human capacity for the development of SMEs in the country.

This was the point put forward by the Senior Special Duties Officer and Head of the Entrepreneurial Development Centre at MIPR, Effandi bin Haji Salleh at the Local Business Development press conference at the Radisson Hotel yesterday, in both his opening statement and an interview.

Speaking in the interview on the challenges they face in SME development, he said, “Our biggest challenge now is that we are trying to improve our internal strength at the moment.

“We need to have those strengths and talents in terms of manpower,” he explained. “At the moment, we need local expertise, which is why we have PPP.

“We also need regional or international expertise,” he continued. “We have to have those capabilities.”

Touching on the benefits that SMEs will get, he said, “We will improve their competencies and strengths in order to make them more sustainable and competitive.

“From the government side, as enablers, we need to improve our internal strength in order to carry out most of these activities.

“As part of the country’s concern, we are trying to attract more foreign direct investment, so these are the three challenges that we are facing at the moment,” he said, adding however, that, at the end of the day, SMEs themselves need to look at trying to assist them too.

“We can only act as a facilitator. They also have to work with us,” he highlighted. “They need to look at all these components in terms of their capabilities and strengths to help them survive and sustain their business growth.”

In his statement, the Entrepreneurial Development Centre Head said that, being one of the forerunner agencies for SME business support and development drive, the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources is committed to continuously providing capacity building programmes that are relevant, current and applicable to Brunei SME needs and operating environment.

He added, however, that the wide-ranging and continuously changing scenarios of SME needs require adaptability and flexibility in a number of areas of service delivery channels.

“Therefore, aside from using our own internal strength and capabilities, the MIPR will also leverage opportunities for expansion of our services via partnership with other government support agencies as well as private business development service providers,” he said.

“We recognise the importance of the Public-Private Partnership initiative (PPP) as one of the strategies to spur SME development in the country,” he continued.

“Partnership between the government agencies and the private sector is extremely important in creating synergy to enable both partners to work together in establishing a common platform for collaboration of various related programmes and projects to enhance SMEs involvement in the global supply chain.”

Citing the Local Business Development Programme as an example, he said that here, MIPR partners with Asia Inc Forum to deliver a series of capacity building activities in the form of business seminars, workshops and forums throughout 2012 by bringing in international and local industry and corporate professionals’ and practitioners’ input into the programme.

“MIPR continues reviewing its current programmes for consolidation to better align resources towards achieving objectives and relevant policy directions of the Brunei Vision 2035 with the objective of producing a compendium of the various interventions of the government and private sectors.”

He said that by doing so, the MIPR is strengthening its strategic and policy frameworks as well as its manpower capabilities to enable effective delivery of targeted programmes that foster industrial linkage between SMEs and larger firms and also enhance SME capability to migrate and develop into exporters and global suppliers.

“Through initiatives under the purview of Ease of Doing Business Steering Committee, the MIPR is also working very closely and in collaboration with other relevant government agencies to introduce and implement reforms to improve business and regulatory environment that foster and facilitate business and SME start-ups and growth.”

Source : http://www.borneobulletin.com.bn/thu/may10h39.htm