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Malaysia and Indonesia Collaboration to Drive ASEAN’s Digital Economy

Image Credits: MDEC, Press Release

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), through its recent Business Mission to Indonesia, has garnered over RM 100 million in qualified digital opportunities. This is MDEC’s first Business Mission to Indonesia since borders were reopened in March 2022.  The Business Mission is an extension of MDEC’s GAIN Programme (Gateway, Amplify, Investor, Nurture), which serves to accelerate local technology companies to the global stage.

The CEO of MDEC noted that the Business Mission has enabled MDEC, Malaysian tech companies and other agencies to follow up on opportunities that were first established before the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns. He added that Indonesia has been one of Malaysia’s most strategic technology partners, thanks to its fast-growing and innovative digital ecosystem. With this Business Mission, we can explore potential joint projects that will benefit both our countries as well as ASEAN as a whole.

Through the GAIN programme, MDEC has been able to deepen collaboration opportunities and bring business opportunities, mindshare, and awareness among our nations’ governments and agencies, as well as allow start-ups in both Malaysia and Indonesia to expand their reach, experience, and connections.

Since 2018, MDEC has run seven Business Missions (three as part of Digital Export Acceleration Missions, and four under the GAIN Connex Programme) which connected more than 40 Malaysian tech companies to Indonesian partners, with a total opportunity value of more than RM370 million in digital exports.

With travel restrictions in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these programmes for 2020 till 2021 have been shifted online. This Business Mission serves to revisit and reactivate the on-the-ground Business Support Ecosystem in Jakarta.

A total of 18 meetings were held in the Business Mission between government and private stakeholders. This included discussions between the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) Jakarta and Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (KOMINFO), as well as talks with Indonesian entrepreneurship ecosystem enabler KUMPUL.

These discussions include topics on potential joint projects in Fintech, Agritech, Cybersecurity, and e-government sectors, specifically with Indonesia’s plans to move the administrative capital to the city of Nusantara in East Kalimantan.

The Business Mission also facilitated meetings between two VC funders on the latest funding programmes available and value creation for both Malaysian and Indonesian companies for capacity building and market expansion. MDEC will continue to identify opportunities to promote Malaysian portfolio companies for their Direct Intervention exports and ecosystem support in Indonesia and across ASEAN.

Digitalisation continues to be a top priority for the Malaysian Government (GOM). In its Federal 2022 Budget, RM20 million has been allocated to the Cradle Fund to intensify efforts to rehabilitate and build the resilience of start-up economies. Moreover, RM45 million is allocated to encourage technological transformation towards the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Overall, the government allocated a total of RM332.1 billion for Budget 2022, the highest value compared to previous budgets. In addition, government revenue is expected to increase to RM234 billion in 2022.

Recently, the Ministry of Finance (MoF) announced that it will begin the 2023 Pre-Budget Tour soon to gather ideas, opinions and suggestions from all stakeholders, Finance Minister said. He noted that the official Budget 2023 portal had also been activated on 3 June to invite private organisations to contribute ideas on issues and proposals for consideration in the budget. As stated in the 2023 Pre-Budget Statement, the MoF will focus on the nation’s economic recovery to ensure sustainable growth next year.


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