The Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office His Royal Highness Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah ibni His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah yesterday consented to launch Brunei’s first Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Conference and Expo at Bridex.
The three-in-one MSME event, a milestone initiative by the Energy and Industry Department at the Prime Minister’s Office and Darussalam Enterprise (DARe), also integrates the Brunei China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO) with collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Guangxi Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China.
The Minister of Energy and Industry at the Prime Minister’s Office and Chairman of DARe Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Singamanteri Colonel (Rtd) Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Awang Haji Mohammad Yasmin Haji Umar greeted HRH upon his arrival to Bridex.
After officiating the event, HRH proceeded to launch the revamped www.business.gov.bn – a one-stop information website for business related government services and reforms – as well as DARe’s Made in Brunei initiative, which will house locally made products in dedicated supermarket shelves, in-flight magazines and places with high foot traffic.
The Crown Prince and Senior Minister then toured Halls 1 and 2 to the delight of local and foreign vendors, who took the opportunity to explain their products and services, which will be showcased until tomorrow, May 8th, 9pm.
The Minister of Energy and Industry at the Prime Minister’s Office explained on the sidelines that the MSME expo – the Made in Brunei Market Fair (MIBMF) – offers an opportunity for Bruneian businesses to test and validate locally made products to the public as well as network with businesses and distributors from China, here for the Brunei CAEXPO, which is being held alongside MIBMF.
“This year also marks a very special occasion as it is Brunei’s turn to be the ‘Country of Honour’ at the China-ASEAN expo in Nanning, China later this September,” said the minister. “About 150 local MSMEs with export potential are expected to participate. Through MIBMF they have the platform to trial and showcase their products and services.”
Meanwhile the conference segment, held yesterday afternoon, deliberated on how MSMEs can access the global market through the digital economy, which is arguably still in its infancy in the region of Southeast Asia.
Invited guests speakers and panelists included the Vice President of Overseas Market of Chinese e-Commerce giant DHGate Tony Tao, Kurniawan Santoso from Facebook and Vishnu Mahmud, Director of PR for Ogilvy & Mather, a New York based advertising and marketing company. They were joined by local MSMEs – including Mumtaz Collections, Storkitani and Burvera – as well as Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam and online solutions provider 3G Media.
Also present at yesterday’s launch was the Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali Haji Apong, Deputy Minister of Finance Dato Paduka Dr Awang Hj Amin Liew Abdullah, Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade II Dato Paduka Awang Haji Erywan Pehin Dato Pekerma Jaya Haji Mohd Yusof and Deputy Minister (Corporate, Penggerak and Economy) and the Prime Minister’s Office Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Roselan Hj Mohd Daud as well as distinguished foreign dignitaries.
Members of the public and businesses can also find information on future trade expos by calling 2384488 ext 1050. Special thanks to the Information Department at the Prime Minister’s Office for sharing pictures for this story.