CM: State govt continues to empower women

Posted on : 08 Mar 2020  Source of News: The Borneo Post

Abg Johari visits one of booths at the Sarawak Women X Global Innovative Entrepreneurship at BCCK. — Photo by Roysten Emmor

KUCHING: The Sarawak government will continue to empower women so they could earn extra income based on technology, says Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He said the state government had taken a slightly different approach in helping women. Apart from continuing with the welfare assistance, it would also strive to empower women by getting them involved in economic activities.

“Economic activities are not confined just to Sarawak market but beyond Sarawak’s shores. As such, we are now in the process of transforming our economy based on technology so that more women can take part in it. I believe our women and Sarawakians as a whole have the education background to enable them to involve themselves in economic activities based on technology,” he said at the opening of Sarawak Women X Global Innovative Entrepreneurship at BCCK here yesterday.

Abang Johari said one of the state government’s initiatives to empower women was the introduction of seed capital, which began with RM500,000 in 2018, and increased to RM2 million this year, to help women in business.

He said the state government was monitoring whatever policy it has for women, and if they are successful, the government would expand it.

He also said he has another policy to help women in Sarawak, but preferred to keep it to himself first.

“I cannot announce it now. Hopefully, the GPS government will still be around. If you vote us out, we cannot do it.

“If you continue to give me the mandate to lead the state government, I will implement it. I have something for our women,” he said.

Abang Johari believed that online business based on technology would change the future of women, ‘and the government is prepared to train them’.

He added the government, through Centex, would work together with Sarawak women entrepreneurs using the latest approaches including artificial intelligence (AI) and augmented reality.

He said these would be done in collaboration with many foreign companies.

The chief minister also encouraged women entrepreneurs in Sarawak to apply for loans from Sarawak Micro Credit Scheme.

He said he had approved RM30 million for the scheme. Those interested can apply through the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, Industrial Terminals and Entrepreneur Development or Sarawak Economic Development Corporation (SEDC).

“We must have a place for you to innovate. We have an incubator for women in Kota Samarahan. We can also collaborate with Tegas to train our women in the area of technology,” he said.