State government all out to support youths with innovative ideas, assures assistant minister

Abdullah (seated, centre) with Wan Suraya on his right, and Knudsen on his left, joins the participants of ‘Youth Co: Lab Malaysia’ in a group photo.

MIRI: Young people with ideas for innovation will receive assistance from the Sarawak government to ensure that their interest in entrepreneurship would continue to be nurtured.

In giving this assurance, Assistant Minister in Chief Minister’s Department (Corporate Affairs and Sarawak Public Communications Unit) Abdullah Saidol points out that there are various financial aid set aside by the state government next year to help young entrepreneurs in Sarawak.

The funds include the

RM25 million slated for various programmes and soft loan schemes for small-medium enterprises (SMEs), RM30 million for Sarawak Micro Credit Scheme, and also the RM8 million for Sarawak Rural Entrepreneurship Transformation.

“That’s why in the (Sarawak) budget for next year, the state government will provide a lot of financial assistance. This are among the initiatives by the state government to help young entrepreneurs,” he told reporters when met after officiating at the closing ceremony of ‘Youth Co: Lab Malaysia’ at SMA Tegas Innovation Hub in Miri Times Square here yesterday.

Abdullah said judging from their presentations yesterday, the eight competing teams should be able to obtain assistance from the government, through Tabung Ekonomi Gagasan Anak Sarawak (Tegas), in developing and marketing their ideas.

“Tegas will meet them and we strive to help as much as we can. We should not just allow their initiatives and presentations (to be presented) for just today; we will try to help where we can,” he said.

On the ‘Youth: Co Lab’ programme, Abdullah said it would be expanded to other divisions to attract more youths to participate and showcase new and innovative ideas.

Three teams – TIMOGAH, #DemiLaut and Ishamuzen – had been selected to represent Sarawak at the ‘Youth Co: Lab Summit’ next year.

The other five competing teams were Bagtruck, Nil., The Founders Club, Cynerve, and Beemo.

Meanwhile, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei deputy resident representative Niels Knudsen, said the youths would continue to be empowered through skills-building and opportunities made available via social innovation and social entrepreneurship.

The ‘Youth Co: Lab Malaysia’ programme was also held in Cyberjaya last month. The programme here was run in collaboration from SMA Tegas Innovation Hub and Miri City Council.

Federal Ministry of Entrepreneur Development secretary-general Datuk Wan Suraya Wan Md Radzi and Miri mayor Adam Yii were also present at the event yesterday.

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