| 28 July 2008
Brunei: More efforts needed to spur SME growth
government’s efforts to reduce red tape for small and medium
enterprises and make it easier for them to find financing are still
lacking, reported local daily the Brunei Times.
Brnei’s King Hassanal Bolkiah on his birthday last year stressed the
importance of spurring SME growth, and called on authorities to ease
the way for SMEs, in particular, streamline regulations that hinder SME
But one year later, SMEs feel the situation has not changed, the paper said.
"Banks are still not efficient. There is a lot of repetitive red tape,"
it quoted an owner of an eatery as saying. Bank rules on SME financing
are reportedly still time-consuming, resulting in unnecessary costs for
Banks, said other businesses, should be more user-friendly, and offer a one-stop information centre for SME financing.
Brunei Times picked Standard Chartered Bank as one of the few finance firms offering services tailored for SMEs.
"Standard Chartered Bank continues to focus strongly on SMEs. This
year, we have launched Express Trade, targeted at trade lines and
working capital; and with the Internet growing into an increasing need
these days, we have also introduced our web bank, Straight to Bank,
that allows for companies to conduct their banking at ease online," it
quoted Tiew Siew Chuen, Standard Chartered CEO, as saying.
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