Love for e-commerce boosting Malaysian small businesses, survey shows.

Embracing e-commerce has put Malaysian small businesses ahead of other developed countries in the Asia Pacific, a survey by CPA Australia revealed today.

The global accounting body said its survey showed that 69 per cent of Malaysian small businesses reported growth in the last 12 months and 72 per cent expected to grow in the next 12 months.

 “Small business is instrumental in driving growth and employment in Malaysia,” the firm’s chief executive, Alex Malley, said in a statement.

“These results would suggest that the small business sector is continuing in its development and will be a significant contributor to Malaysia’s goal of achieving developed economy status by 2020,” he added.

The survey showed that 76 per cent of Malaysian respondents earned revenue from online sales and 85 per cent used social media for business purposes.

Malley attributed the steady growth reported by Malaysian small businesses to stable government policies.

The survey ranked Malaysia ahead of Hong Kong, Vietnam, China, Singapore, New Zealand and Australia, but behind Indonesia.

Despite the positive result, the survey showed that there were challenges in these markets, with respondents citing increasing costs and difficulty in accessing external finances, among others.

“Costs pressures are always top of mind for any small business, as are issues of competition.

“We would have expected to see more small businesses reporting the devaluation of the ringgit as having a big impact, but it would appear small businesses are showing their adaptability in managing that issue,” Malley said.

Majority of the respondents in the survey were aged 39 or younger.

CPA Australia’s previous survey ranked Malaysia above Australia and Singapore, but below Vietnam and Indonesia.