The Business Survival of Micro-enterprises in Facing Economic Uncertainty


  • Mohd Akmal Naim Mohamad Zaidi Faculty of Industrial Management, Universiti Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia
  • Noraina Mazuin Sapuan Faculty of Industrial Management, Universiti Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia
  • Suhal Kusairi School of Economics and Business, Telkom University, Bandung, Indonesia



Economic uncertainty , Micro-enterprises, Government support , Governance & strategic planning , Digital Marketing, Business Survival


The current economic uncertainty, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, has affected the global socio-economy. In Malaysia, to curb the spread of Covid-19 viruses, the government has implemented the Movement Control Order (MCO). This action has caused many SMEs (including micro-enterprises) not to be able to continue their operations as usual, mainly due to cash flow problems, operational instability and supply chain disruptions. Micro-enterprises are a significant contributor to local economic development. Hence, business continuity strategies are essential for these enterprises to continue and survive in the market. The government has introduced various methods to support these businesses. Meanwhile, virtuous strategic planning and management can improve the management's governance and integrity in making accurate decisions to achieve their goals. The implementation of digital marketing can upsurge the sale of micro-enterprises. This study intended to examine the relationship between government support, governance & strategic planning, operational restructuring and digital marketing with micro-enterprises business survival. This study uses a quantitative method with a total of 135 respondents among the owner of micro-enterprises in Complex Pekan Rabu, Kedah. Government support, governance & strategic planning and digital marketing were found to be survival determinants factors during the covid-19 pandemic.

Author Biography

Noraina Mazuin Sapuan, Faculty of Industrial Management, Universiti Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia

Dr Noraina Mazuin Sapuan is a Senior Lecturer in Faculty of Industrial Management, University Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia. She completed her undergraduate and Master degree at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) majoring in Applied Economics and Public Policy and Islamic Economics, respectively. She graduated with Doctor of Philosophy (Economics) from Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT) and had successfully been awarded Pro-Chancellor Award during the 15th Convocation Ceremony in 2016. She has enormous experiences in teaching at tertiary level as well as research and consultancy works. Her area of interests is in Applied Macroeconometrics, Financial Economics, Circular Economy - Sustainable Development Goals (Micro/Macro), Environmental Economics, Islamic Banking and Finance and Personal Financial Planning. With her experiences in research, she has secured numerous external and internal grants from public and private institutions. In addition, she also had won many awards in international and national conferences and research exhibitions. In terms of management experience, she has vast involvements in academic management at Higher Education Institution.  She has been appointed as a Senator at her former university for two consecutive cycles (2016-2020) and as the Head of Department for Accounting and Finance Department (2016-2020). With her experience and knowledge, she hopes to become an academician that contributes positively towards the expansion of knowledge in the field of economic, finance and sustainability management. 


Adams, R. L. (2017). How to develop an effective marketing strategy. Retrieved November 15, 2020, from Forbes.

Alom, F., Abdullah, M. A., Moten, A. R., & Azam, S. M. F. (2016). Success factors of overall improvement of microenterprises in Malaysia: an empirical study. Journal of Global Entrepreneurship Research, 6(1), 1–13.

Akinwale, Y.O. (2020). Technology innovation and financial performance of MSMEs during Covid-19 lockdown in Dammam area of Saudi Arabia: a case of food and beverage sector. International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation, and Development, Vol. 12 No. 2, 136-152.

Altig, D., Baker, S., Barrero, J. M., Bloom, N., Bunn, P., Chen, S., Davis, S. J., Leather, J., Meyer, B., Mihaylov, E., Mizen, P., Parker, N., Renault, T., Smietanka, P. & Thwaites, G. (2020). Economic uncertainty before and during the COVID-19 pandemic, Journal of Public Economics, Vol. 191, 104274.

Bartik, A. W., Bertrand, M., Cullen, Zoe, B., Glaeser, E. L., Luca, M., & Stanton, C. T. (2020). How Are Small Businesses Adjusting To Covid-19? Early evidence fro a survey, 53(9), 1689–1699.

Bartz, W., & Winkler, A. (2016). Flexible or fragile ? The growth performance of small and young businesses during the global fi nancial crisis: Evidence from Germany. Journal of Business Venturing, 31(2), 196–215.

Bosimin, P. K. & Chan, J. L. K. (2018). Perception of Sabah as a safe tourist destination from the perspective of the tour operators and tourists. Journal of Tourism. Hospitality and Environment Management, 3(11), 1-13.

Che Omar, A. R., Ishak, S., & Jusoh, M. A. (2020). The impact of Covid-19 Movement Control Order on SMEs’ businesses and survival strategies. Malaysian Journal of Society and Space, 16(2), 139–150.

Chatzoglou, P., Chatzoudes, D., Sarigiannidis, L. & Theriou, G. (2018). The role of firm-specific factors in the strategy-performance relationship: Revisiting the resource-based view of the firm and the VRIO framework. Management Research Review, Vol. 41(1), 46-73.

Cook, J. (2015). A six-stage business continuity and disaster recovery planning cycle. SAM Advanced Management Journal, 80(3), 22–33.

Crick, J. M. & Crick, D. (2020). Coopetition and COVID-19: Collaborative business-to-business marketing strategies in a pandemic crisis. Industrial Marketing Management, 88, 206-213.

Daft, R. (2004) Organisation Theory and Design. Eight Edicion. Mason, OH. South – Western.

Department of Statistics Malaysia. (2020). Report of Special Survey on Effects of Covid-19 on Economy And Individual (Round 1). Retrieved from

Devece, C., Ortiz, M. P. & Armengot, C. R. (2016). Entrepreneurship during economic crisis:Success factors and paths to failure. Journal of Business Research, 69(11), 5366-5370.

Duarte Alonso, A., Bressan, A., Kok, S. K., Sakellarios, N., Koresis, A., O’Shea, M., Solis, M. A. B. & Santoni, L. J. (2021). Facing and responding to the COVID-19 threat – an empirical examination of MSMEs. European Business Review, Vol. 33 No. 5, 2021, 775-796.

Delmar, F., & Shane, S. (2003). Does business planning facilitate the development of new ventures? Strategic Management Journal, 24(12).

Effendy, A.A. (2018). Analysis of marketing strategies to increase sales at PT. Karya. Jurnal Pemikiran Ilmiah Dan Pendidikan Administrasi Perkantoran, Vol. 4 No. 2, 103-108.

Farooq, M.U., Hussain, A., Masood, T. & Habib, M.S. (2021). Supply Chain Operations Management in Pandemics: A State-of-the-Art Review Inspired by COVID-19. Sustainability, 13, 2504.

Fabeil, N. F., Pazim, K. H., & Langgat, J. (2020). The Impact of Covid-19 Pandemic Crisis on Micro-Enterprises: Entrepreneurs’ Perspective on Business Continuity and Recovery Strategy. Journal of Economics and Business, 3(2).

Games, D., Hidayat, T, Fhardilha, J., Fernando, Y. & Sari, D. K. (2022). The Impact of Trust, Knowledge Sharing, and Affective Commitment on SME Innovation Performance. Journal of Governance and Integrity, Vol. 5 No. 2, 267-274.

Hamdan, N. H. B., Kassim, S. B. H., & Lai, P. C. (2021). the Covid-19 Pandemic Crisis on Micro- Entrepreneurs in Malaysia: Impact and Mitigation Approaches. Journal of Global Business and Social Entrepreneurship (GBSE), 7(20), 52–64.

Hassan, S., Nadzim, S. Z. A., & Shiratuddin, N. (2015). Strategic use of social media for small business based on the AIDA Model. Procedia- Social and Behavioral Sciences, 172, 262-269.

Joyce, P. (2022). Strategic Management and Governance Strategy Execution Around the World. Routledge, New York, USA.

Karel, S., Adam, P., & Radomir, P. (2013). Strategic planning and business performance of Micro, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises. Journal of Competitiveness, 5(4), 57-72.

Kamboj, S., Goyal, P., & Rahman, Z. (2015). A resource-based view on marketing capability, operations capability and financial performance: An empirical examination of mediating role. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 189, 406-415

Lai, P. C. (2021). the Covid-19 Pandemic Crisis on Micro- Entrepreneurs in Malaysia. Journal of Global Business and Social Entrepreneurship (GBSE), 7(20), 52–64.

Lim, L. L. (2020). The socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 in Malaysia : Policy review and guidance for protecting the most vulnerable and supporting enterprises. International Labour Organization.

Liu, Y., Gayle, A. A., Wilder-Smith, A., & Rocklöv, J. (2020). The reproductive number of COVID-19 is higher compared to SARS coronavirus. Journal of Travel Medicine, 27(2), 1–6.

Mustapa, A. N., & Mohamad, A. (2021). Malaysian Government Business Support and Assistance for Small and Medium Enterprises: A Case of COVID-19 Pandemic Crisis. In B. S. Sergi & A. R. Jaaffar (Eds.), Modeling Economic Growth in Contemporary Malaysia (pp. 291–305). Emerald Publishing Limited.

Peeri, N. C., Shrestha, N., Rahman, M. S., Zaki, R., Tan, Z., Bibi, S., … Haque, U. (2020). The SARS, MERS and novel coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemics, the newest and biggest global health threats: what lessons have we learned? International Journal of Epidemiology.

Singh, K. & Mitchell, W. (1996). Precarious collaboration: Business survival after partnersshut-down or form new partnerships. Strategic Management Journal, 17(S1), 99-115.

Singh, S., Chamola, P., Kumar, V., Verma, P. & Makkar, N. (2022). Explaining the revival strategies of Indian MSMEs to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 outbreak. Benchmarking: An International Journal. DOI 10.1108/BIJ-08-2021-0497.

Syaifullah, J., Syaifudin, M., Sukendar, M.U. & Junaedi, J. (2021). Social media marketing and business performance of MSMEs during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Journal of Asian Finance, Economics and Business, Vol. 8 No. 2, 523-531.

Svatosova, V. (2017). Identification of financial strategy in small and medium-sized entrepreneurship. ACTA Universitasis Agriculture ET Silviculture Mendeliance Brunensis, 65(4), 1435–1453.

TEKUN. (2020). Inisiatif TEKUN Covid-19. Retrieved from

Warnier, V., Weppe, X., & Lecocq, X. (2013). Extending resource-based theory: considering strategic, ordinary and junk resources. Management Decision, 51(7), 1359–1379.

WHO. (2020). World Health Organisation (2020). Coronavirus disease (Covid-2019) situation reports. Retrieved from




How to Cite

Mohamad Zaidi , M. A. N. ., Sapuan, N. M., & Kusairi, S. (2023). The Business Survival of Micro-enterprises in Facing Economic Uncertainty. Journal of Governance and Integrity, 5(3), 328–335.



JGI Vol. 5 Issue 3, December 2022