PETALING JAYA: As the country goes into its second year of the Covid-19 pandemic, businesses and trade chambers are hoping everyone will apply wisely the lessons learnt in the past year.
The trade chambers are urging everyone to strictly adhere to the SOP as a rise in the number of cases may wield a bigger blow to the economy than the first movement control order last March.

Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia Deputy President Norsyahrin Hamidon said the pandemic forced small and medium-size businesses to embrace e-commerce to stay resilient.

“When the pandemic first hit last January, as was the case with the rest of the world, we did not know how to react.

“We then agreed to close our businesses but we realised that the effects of shutting down the economy was just as bad as the virus when people started losing jobs and companies closed down, ” he said.

He noted that millions of people were affected when SMEs had no business, because their employees had multiple dependents.

“The moratoriums on loans, subsidies and financial assistance from the government in various economic packages in the past one year helped the economy to get back on its feet.

“Sadly, businesses were lax on following the SOP and many took it for granted.
“If we are forced to hunker down once more, it may almost be impossible to get up again as these are SMEs with small capitals.

“The SMEs cannot survive without government assistance and we must not take for granted that with the economy having been reopened, everything is normal.

“We must apply the lessons we learnt in the past year, strictly adhere to the SOP and embrace e-commerce as much as possible, ” said Norsyahrin when contacted.