Women make up majority of new e-commerce traders

A recent survey by e-commerce platform Shopee revealed that 72 per cent of new entrepreneurs are females.

They offer mainly health and beauty products, women’s clothing as well as fashion accessories and are able to generate an average of RM3,950 a month.

Of the 11,850 sellers surveyed, 5,406 are new entrepreneurs enabled by e-commerce, who cited their businesses are operated fully online.

While the contribution of rural entrepreneurs only constitutes 13.3 per cent, it is far and wide and driven primarily by younger women. They include the sales of products such as keropok lekor, belacan and cencaluk.

“The survey findings show that e-commerce provides equal opportunity for all to make a mark online. While e-commerce helps to better livelihoods, this also goes to show that e-commerce can play a larger role in shaping the modern workforce,” said Ian Ho, regional managing director of Shopee.

“With the strong infrastructure in place, we can empower Malaysians to gainfully run an online store be it full-time or part-time, regardless of who they are and where they are from.”

Interestingly, while the contribution of rural entrepreneurs only constitutes 13.3 per cent, these rural sellers are able to generate an average of RM3,200 in sales monthly.

“Some of the items these sellers offer include keropok lekor, kek lapis, ikan bilis Pangkor, belacan, cencaluk,” said Ho.

“Although some of these items are readily available in supermarkets, the fact they are homemade gives these sellers an edge.

“Many are also surprised that some of their products have such a big fan base outside their home state.”

Separately, Ho said Shopee’s ‘Penjana Shope Malaysia Online’ campaign in August and September generated sales worth RM500 million for over 80,000 local sellers on its platform.

“This shows you the impact of how many sellers benefitted from this initiative,” he said.

“From the buyers’ point of view, about three million Malaysians benefited as well with many first time online buyers going on to purchase four additional purchases.”

He also revealed its Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) campaign brought 40,000 new sellers online. The majority of them reported a 158 per cent uplift in sales.

“These two campaigns have helped cushion the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic for local sellers.”

Here’s a round-up of The News Normal today.

AGONG’S ADVICE – STOP POLITICKING AND SUPPORT BUDGET

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah has advised MPs to support the 2021 Budget for the sake of the people as well as the economic recovery of the country affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Al-Sultan Abdullah called on them to respect his advice to immediately stop all political disputes and instead prioritise the welfare of the people as well as the well-being of the country so that the 2021 Budget is approved without any interference.

DAP’S RONNIE LIU ARRESTED FOR ALLEGEDLY INSULTING KING

DAP’s Ronnie Liu has been arrested to help the investigation into a social media post deemed insulting towards the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

The Sungai Pelek assemblyman is being investigated under Section 4(1) of the Sedition Act 1948 and Section 233 of the Communication and Multimedia Act 1998.

Liu is alleged to have uploaded a Facebook status with the words “Now in Bangkok. They Are Saying No to the King”.

Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo, had on Facebook at 1.37pm, said Liu was released on police bail.

ALLEGED RIVER POLLUTERS’ REMAND EXTENDED TO NOV 3

A director of a company repairing and selling construction machinery and seven others had their remand order extended by six days by the Selayang magistrate’s court over investigations into the pollution of Sungai Selangor.

Magistrate Nik Mohd Fadli Nik Azlan granted the remand extension on the eight, aged between 28 and 66, following an application by the police.

They are being held under Section 430 of the Penal Code for allegedly committing mischief by causing a diminution in the supply of water for agricultural purposes, or food or drink for human beings or animals.

MALAYSIAN SAMUEL ISAIAH IN THE RUNNING FOR GLOBAL TEACHER PRIZE

English language teacher Samuel Isaiah from SK Runchang, Muadzam Shah in Pahang is one of the 10 finalists for the Global Teacher Prize 2020 organised in partnership with Unesco.

Isaiah was selected from over 12,000 nominations and applications from over 140 countries around the world, Varkey Foundation said in a statement.

The Global Teacher Prize is part of the foundation’s long-standing commitment to improving the status of teachers.

Isaiah introduced many innovations to inspire his Orang Asli students to dream big and crucially connected them to the outside world, including an e-mail exchange project called ‘Asli E-Pal’, where they communicate in English with adult volunteers all over Malaysia and overseas.

MALAYSIAN CHOCOLATE MAKER EARNS GLOBAL AWARDS

Malaysian chocolate maker Benns Ethicoa has won four international awards in the past week.

Executive director Wilfred Ng revealed Benns Ethicoa’s drinking chocolate made from cacao beans originating from Sungai Ruan in Pahang, won a bronze award in the International Chocolate Awards under the plain/origin dark drinking chocolate (made with milk) category.

Its limited edition ‘Merdeka Blend’ a 63 per cent dark chocolate blend from two Malaysian farms – Sungai Ruan and Panchor in Melaka – won three awards at Asia Pacific International Chocolate Awards.

It won gold for ‘Directly Traded’ and ‘Growing Country’ and a silver in the ‘Plain Dark Origin Bars’ category.

“The victories have really put Malaysian cacao or chocolates on the map,” said Ng, the son of company founder Ng Tuck Ming.

ECONOMIC RECOVERY CONTINUES

Chief Statistician of Malaysia Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin says the Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in higher unemployment in Malaysia.

The highest unemployment rate in the first half of the year was in May at 5.3 per cent.

As more economic sectors continued to resume, the rate fell to 4.7 per cent in July and August.

Merchandise exports, meanwhile, improved in September by 13.6 per cent. Imports also showed signs of recovery with a smaller decline of 3.6 per cent attributable to better performance of capital and consumption goods.

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