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Malaysia Budget 2018 – A Post-Budget Commentary by Matteo Sutto, SVP of Growth, iPrice Group

31 October 2017 | Matteo Sutto, Senior Vice President of Growth, iPrice Group

These are exciting times for players in the e-commerce space as the Malaysian government has included the digital economy in the TN50 Industrial Revolution plan. Tracing the successes of more developed e-commerce in countries such as Taiwan and Singapore, Malaysia’s digital sector is at the brink of accelerated growth and we believe the investments announced at Budget 2018 would be a key catalyst to maximise the full potential of the futuristic economy.

We welcome the government’s investment of RM83.5 million to develop Southeast Asia’s first Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) and logistical support for e-commerce. This is in line with the plans stated in the National eCommerce Strategic Roadmap and we’re excited to see further improvements in last-mile delivery network that would make online purchases much more satisfactory for consumers.

We are excited by the government’s efforts to exempt taxes imposed on funds raised by venture capital companies for startups in Malaysia. In the past six years, the top 10 e-commerce in Malaysia has raised RM14 billion in funds to develop their online platform. With this we hope to see further influx of funds for e-commerce startups in Malaysia to make available a greater number of products and services for consumers in the country and across Southeast Asia.

We are also encouraged by the government’s investment in East Malaysia to improve its communications infrastructure. Our recent research on East Malaysian online shoppers showed that shoppers in the East spent 75% more time searching for products online and are 10% more likely to shop using a desktop as compared to the West. This was because consumers found it easier to shop via desktop as it provided a more stable internet connection. We hope the government’s allocation of RM1 billion to improve its telecommunications infrastructure will provide better broadband mobile internet connections to spur further online shoppers from the East.

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About iPrice Group

iPrice Group is Southeast Asia’s leading Meta-Search platform, connecting consumers with hundreds of e-commerce merchants through a great shopping experience. Since October 2014, the platform has established itself as the fastest growing in its segment across seven markets: Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines and Hong Kong.

iPrice currently operates three business lines: price comparison for electronics and health & beauty; product discovery for fashion and home & living; and coupons across all verticals.

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