Selangor Journal
A view of the city skyline in Kuala Lumpur on October 23, 2019. — Picture by REUTERS

Grants for SME development progs must be monitored effectively — A-G’s Report

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 — Grants for small and medium enterprise (SME) development programmes should be monitored in terms of expenditure performance by the three ministries involved to ensure compliance with financial regulations, said the Auditor-General’s Report 2021.

The monitoring should be carried out by the Ministry of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives, the Ministry of Economy, and the Ministry of Finance.

According to the report, this ensures the grants given to the agencies involved are fully utilised for the intended purposes.

“If the grants are not fully spent, the remaining amount must be returned immediately so it can be used for other development programmes,” it said.

The report added the Malaysian Small and Medium Enterprises Corporation (SME Corp) should plan carefully and consider all the needs of SMEs before applying for funds to run the programmes.

Auditing has been carried out for the development grants under the SME Investment Partner (SIP) programme and the Going Export (GoEx) programme from 2014 to 2022, involving a review of RM59.52 million.

The audit’s objective is to determine whether the grants were spent for approved purposes following the laws, guidelines, financial regulations, and agreements in force.

RM16.73 million from the SIP programme had not been spent, while poor implementation of the programme resulted in only RM27.91 million of the RM59.52 million in grants being spent within the set period while RM14.88 million was spent on other programmes, making the total amount spent for the benefit of SMEs being RM42.79 million, or 71.9 per cent of the allocation.

— Bernama

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