Entrepreneurial environments and growth: evidence from Malaysia GEM data

by Prof. Syed Amberi Ahmad and Prof Dr. Siri Roland Xavier

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to explore the entrepreneurial activities in Malaysia through determining some demographic characteristics, expert and individual perceptions of Malaysian entrepreneurs, in addition to the environment for entrepreneurship, and to highlight Malaysia’s entrepreneurial position internationally. The study was drawn from country-level data provided by the National Malaysia GEM (Global Entrepreneurship Monitor) to evaluate the current status of entrepreneurial environments in the country.

The findings show that the early stages of entrepreneurship development in Malaysia are very dynamic and volatile. The number of early-stage entrepreneurial activities in Malaysia is still lower than in other parts of developing countries. Inadequate financial support, bureaucracy and inconsistency of government policies, lack of entrepreneurial education at tertiary level and inadequacy of entrepreneurial training are some of the important obstacles encountered by entrepreneurs in Malaysia. On the other hand, there are favourable entrepreneurial environmental conditions determined in this study that are promising: the physical infrastructures and services access towards entrepreneurship, and the financial environment related with entrepreneurship.

The results are also useful for optimising the local entrepreneurial environment, and are helpful for policy decision makers. Institutions need to be strengthened before entrepreneurial resources can be fully deployed. This paper provides the Malaysian government with theoretical support so that the government can utilise limited resources to develop entrepreneurial activities.

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