Rural Poverty Eradication through Micro Enterprise Scaling up
Jariah Masud and Laily Paim
Malaysia has been successful in eradicating poverty especially in the rural areas. One of the strategies employed was through micro enterprise development among women, majority are full time housewives. Research conducted over the period of 10 years among rural women entrepreneurs under the supervision of Department of Agriculture have revealed that women’s involvement in micro enterprise have shown that the women’s micro enterprises contributed significantly (about 30%) to family income and able to bring the family out of poverty. About one third of the women studied had scaled up their enterprises and able to employ other women especially the elderly women. On the average the women micro enterprises employed five persons, majority were older women.
With low levels of education and lack of skills, the older women in the rural areas had limited earning opportunity and the scaled up micro enterprises spearheaded by formerly poor women provided them with the job opportunities. A family based micro enterprise producing “roti Chanai” (Prata bread) had 22 women spread thin the dough daily and these women earned almost USD100 per month. This figure is much higher than the poverty figure of the MDG i.e. USD1 per day.
Efforts to scale up the micro enterprises in the rural areas can be accelerate the poverty eradication process by providing more job opportunities to the rural population. Since most of the enterprises are agriculture based, this can also contribute to have value added to agriculture products. An integrated micro enterprise scaling up development plan for rural Malaysia is needed to realize the positive impact of this sector in poverty eradication.
For more information, please contact
Dr Nayan Kanwal
Research Management Centre
Universiti Putra Malaysia
Email: [email protected]
Tel: +603 8946 6192
Fax: + 603 8942 6539