For Immediate Release

Press Release

BANGKOK, Thailand –– Today, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), in partnership with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Regional Development Mission for Asia and the US-ASEAN Business Council (US-ABC), launched the Business Continuity and Resilience (BCR) Tab webpage. The BCR Tab is designed to further help small businesses recover from the pandemic through training focused on resiliency, inclusiveness, and prosperity.

As part of the redesigned ASEAN SME Academy online platform, the BCR Tab is a one-stop webpage of courses for small (including micro) and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to accelerate economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The courses are provided at no cost for small businesses, thanks to contributions by international organizations, such as the International Labor Organization, and US-ABC member companies.

BCR Tab users can access e-learning modules, webinars, communities of practice, and curated tools and resources to learn about business growth and expansion, especially relevant to COVID-19 economic recovery and digital transformation. These new resources will be available in four languages (English, Thai, Indonesian, and Vietnamese).

“With the BCR Tab, ASEAN SMEs will have access to tools and resources to help them prepare for this rapidly changing business landscape that calls for business resilience through digital transformation, especially after having faced COVID-19 lockdowns,” said Blesila Lantayona, Chair of the ASEAN Coordinating Committee on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (ACCMSME). “The ASEAN SME Academy’s new BCR Tab will contribute to fast tracking the smarter adoption of digital solutions to future-proof SMEs.”

“We believe the BCR Tab will be beneficial for the ASEAN SMEs to help them develop and expand their business, and also to be more resilient to the future crisis that may strike,” said Ms. Margaret Hanson-Muse, Chief of Operating Officer, US-ABC. “The development of a tool like the BCR Tab can significantly improve the relevance of the ASEAN SME Academy we have so proudly established,” she emphasized.

“The United States is proud to continue our partnership with ASEAN and US-ABC to help small businesses grow, expand and thrive,” said Dr. Steve G. Olive, Mission Director for the USAID Regional Development Mission for Asia. “The USAID-supported Business Continuity and Resiliency Tab webpage offers a fresh suite of online ASEAN SME Academy courses that represents a timely response to the challenges faced by small businesses in a rapidly changing, increasingly digital world.”

Spearheaded by 2014 USAID and the US-ASEAN Business Council when they first founded the US-ASEAN Business Alliance for Competitive Small and Medium Enterprises and later established the ASEAN SME Academy in 2016, this collaboration strengthens ASEAN SMEs.

Through renewed collective support to modernize the ASEAN SME Academy platform, SMEs will be better equipped to manage cash flow, increase revenue, and leverage digital technologies for growth.

For more information, contact

ASEAN-USAID Inclusive Growth in ASEAN through Innovation, Trade and E-Commerce (IGNITE)
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