By Adrian Lim
KUCHING, Jan 30: Julian Tan, the special assistant to Democratic Action Party (DAP) Sarawak chairman urges the Sarawak government to assist the small and medium enterprises (SMEs), small-time traders and hawkers especially at India Street here immediately.
Following feedback after a walkabout with a few DAP members including Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii, Tan said some shops there had to retrench workers and cut costs in order to sustain their businesses.
Tan, who is also former Stampin MP, noted that businesses at India Street were heavily dependent on the tourism sector which was affected by Covid-19.
“Most traders that we spoke to shared with us that, to cut costs, most have no choice but to cut their workforce.
“Despite losses, some are trying to stretch through by keeping their workers as long as possible, knowing that their workers have a family to feed.
“We are touched and, at the same time, very concerned about their plight.
“The chain domino effect is real; when the SMEs suffer, so do those workers and their families,” Tan said in a press statement today.
Citing a 2019 report from the State and Administrative District Sarawak, Tan added the B40 income community consisted of more than 43 per cent of the total household in Sarawak.
Hence, he called on the state government to provide financial assistance to SMEs and the B40 income groups.
Meanwhile Tan, Dr Yii, and Democratic Action Party Socialist Youth (Dapsy) Kuching’s chief Anthony Chin were at India Street today distributing 2021 New Year calendar and red packets in conjunction with the upcoming Chinese New Year celebration.
During their walkabout, they also reminded the public to be vigilant in adhering to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) of Covid-19, especially during the upcoming festive season. — DayakDaily