KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Malaysia sustainable and inclusive future will depend not only on good economic policies and decision making process, but also involves integrating new technologies, while being an innovative and entrepreneurial society, including in the eCommerce space.

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak said the National eCommerce Strategic Roadmap, spearheaded by the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation, has been mandated to map out actionable programmes that lead to Malaysian businesses becoming global eCommerce champions.

“With the government’s intervention via the roadmap, we are aiming to double growth (of the eCommerce sector) to 20.8 per cent per annum to RM170 billion in 2020,” he said at the launch of the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia (NCCIM) Economic Forum 2017 here today.

He said Malaysia’s eCommerce grew by 12.8 per cent per annum between 2012 and 2015 to RM68 billion, making up 5.9 per cent of the gross domestic product.

Najib said eCommerce had a very bright future in Malaysia, especially with the establishment of the world’s first Digital Free Trade Zone in the country.

He said SME Corp is aiming for 1,500 new small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to join the Digital Free Trade Zone platform this year, in addition to the 50,000 Malaysian SMEs that currently hold active accounts on the Alibaba e-Commerce platform.

“Next year, SME Corp will target 8,000 new SMEs to join the DFTZ platform,” he added.

Najib said another critical factor for boosting high growth potential and sustaining Malaysia’s competitiveness is unlocking productivity.

He said to address the nation’s decelerating productivity growth in recent years, the government formulated the Malaysia Productivity Blueprint aimed at doubling productivity growth to 3.7 per cent per annum during the 11th Malaysia Plan.

Meanwhile, Najib said China’s Belt and Road initiative would be a game changer for the regional economy, creating enormous trade and investment prospects via greater connectivity in sea and land links.

Nevertheless, he said Malaysia is an open, friendly and business conducive country, and thus. the nation had also been receiving foreign investment from around the world, including from Japan, India, Saudi Arabia, Europe and the American continents.

“In fact, as of the first quarter of this year, according to data sourced by the Department of Statistics, investments from China represented merely two per cent of total foreign direct investments (FDI) in Malaysia, or number ten among the top ten FDI nations in the country,” he added.

At the event, the prime minister also launched the Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia’s, “Dewan Digital Economy”.

It is an initiative which provides members of the chamber with a digital economy platform, including social media, e-wallet, crowdfunding, as well as the Malaysian Fintech Hub, a regional financial technology hub.