KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia should be ready for the next big thing next year following Alibaba founder Jack Ma’s appointment as the country’s digital economy adviser, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong said.
He said Malaysia would be a pioneer in the setting up of the Digital Free Trade Zone, which was being pursued vigorously by the government.
“We are looking into the incentives, the assistances needed and the entire roadmap for the Digital Free Trade Zone. With this, the magnitude of the government’s commitment to growing the Malaysian digital economy is very clear,” he told reporters at the close of the one-day Digital Economy Forum 2016, here yesterday.
On China’s investment upsurge in Malaysia, he said the commitment between both countries would benefit not only Malaysia, but also its Asean neighbours, especially in the international underwater cable project.
“Malaysia is working with our Asean neighbours — Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore — to greatly improve Intra-Asean subsea cable connections and from the region to North America,” he said.
He said if a Google study was anything to go by, two-thirds of respondents were willing to buy goods and services such as shoes, air tickets, cab rides via a smartphone app.
Wee said China led the way with 89 per cent of those polled saying that they preferred to do so, followed by India (86 per cent), Vietnam (82 per cent), South Korea (78 per cent), Thailand (78 per cent), Malaysia (69 per cent), and Singapore (69 per cent).
“Small and medium enterprises must take note of this in order to build more effective marketing and sales campaigns,” he added. — Bernama