KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 24 — Small businesses in Malaysia are yet to be on par with those in developed nations and will suffer when the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement takes effect in 2018, its representative said today.
Malaysia’s small-medium enterprise (SME) association president Datuk Michael Kang said smaller companies were beset with human capital development issues and estimated two to three per cent will be in trouble with open trade, unless Putrajaya helps.
“Once TPP takes place, we will need to adhere to international labour standards and that includes achieving a certain productivity standard, which Malaysia is comparatively lower than its partners in the pact,” he said at The King’s Discourse on the TPP by King’s College London Alumni Malaysia and Columbia University Alumni Association held at Ritz Carlton hotel here.
Kang also pointed that these companies do not have the resources in terms of financial capabilities to train their staff, thus, required the government to assist on the matter.
Overall, he said it will be tough for Malaysian SME companies to expand their businesses.
“But again, with the government’s assistance, I’m sure it would not be a problem when TPP takes effect in two years’ time,” he said.
Malaysia signed the free trade pact with 11 other countries in February.
The TPP was agreed on the basis to strengthen economic collaboration by reducing or eliminating trade tariffs among these nations, which among other consist of the United States, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
Critics are of the opinion that the TPP would bring more advantages to the bigger nation like the US than the smaller economy countries.
Some even claimed the TPP was a way for US to oversee the market of China through countries like Malaysia that currently has strong ties with its Chinese counterpart.