The women and youth groups are among those given special focus in increasing the labor supply in the 2023 Budget with an allocation value of RM18.6 billion.
SHAH ALAM – The Covid-19 pandemic that hit the country with the first case detected in January 2020, caused various impacts on the people of this country, especially in terms of sources of income because many lost their jobs.
The highest unemployment record recorded was in the second quarter of 2020 at a rate of 5.1 percent which is when the country was at the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic infection and gradually dropped to 3.6 percent for the third quarter of this year.
The decrease was contributed by several government measures under the leadership of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob such as the initiative under JaminKerja Keluarga Malaysia which provides job opportunities and skills training to more than 310,000 people so far.
Although the number of unemployment has shown a positive decrease, the government continues to focus specifically on the 2023 Budget which was presented on 7 October.
In the Budget, the government will continue the Employment Incentives under the Social Security Organization (SSO) to encourage employers to provide new job opportunities for unemployed Malaysian families such as the disabled (OKU), Orang Asli, ex-convicts and women returning to work.
Employment incentives ranging from RM600 to RM750 per month will be paid for a period of three months to employers and are expected to open up career opportunities for more than 70,000 job seekers.
The government through Sokeso will also provide mobility assistance of RM500 to job seekers who find employment abroad and are resident.
In addition, the government will also continue the implementation of MySTEP by offering 50,000 career opportunities on a contract basis including 15,000 in the public sector and 35,000 people through Government Linked Companies (GLC) with salaries increased by RM100 which is between RM1,500 to RM2,100 ringgit compared to RM1,400 up to RM2,000.
The Human Resources Development Corporation (HRD Corp) will also provide a total of RM750 million ringgit to provide skills training to more than 800,000 workers to increase productivity and income opportunities.
The Securities Commission in collaboration with the Capital Market Development Fund also implemented the Capital Market Graduate Program involving RM30 million to increase the marketability of 9,000 graduates in the capital market.
In addition, RM20 million will be provided to implement the Graduate Entrepreneur Program (Push) for the benefit of 1,000 graduates to enter the field of entrepreneurship.
Improve the labor market
The Chief Economist of the Future Labor Market Research Center (EU-ERA), Associate Prof Dr Mohd Yusof Saari said the 2023 Budget allocates at least RM99.7 billion which covers the labor market ecosystem, labor supply, job market and labor demand.
According to him, the government has presented Budget 2023 with one of its goals to further improve market conditions by empowering focus groups such as B40, M40, women and youth with a value of RM18.6 billion.
Associate Prof Dr Mohd Yusof Saari
“In addition, the labor demand component is focused on creating employment opportunities for the people through direct and indirect measures worth at least RM80.9 billion.
“Measures to strengthen the job market through job search incentives and matching to increase employment are expected to cost around RM208 million,” he said.
Mohd Yusof described a multidimensional approach to incentivize people to work, realign the skills and competencies of the workforce to meet industry demand as key to supporting economic growth.
“Youth unemployment, graduate marketability, worker protection and talent development are addressed in Budget 2023 by leveraging high technology thus strengthening the increase of highly skilled workforce and living standards,” he said.
He said, the direction of Budget 2023 clearly involves large allocations to stimulate high-quality investment in strategic sectors, create high-skilled jobs and provide incentives for digitization and automation.
“Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are encouraged to increase the value chain to innovate and produce high quality products and services. This is important to create real jobs for Malaysians,” he said.
Mohd Yusof also sees optimizing job creation through inclusive hiring and a better job matching mechanism to overcome economic sectors that are experiencing labor shortages.
“Improving the job matching mechanism is important to reduce job search friction. In Budget 2023, the development of MYFutureJobs Satellite Centers across the country and National Placement Centers are important to help job seekers find relevant jobs.
“In addition, the policies and initiatives on the labor market included in Budget 2023 also support the Twelfth Malaysia Plan (RMK-12).
“For example, the allocation of RM235 million in financing funds to encourage more women to increase business capacity and improve marketing strategies.
“This initiative is expected to increase female labor participation and directly support the policy direction of Chapter 10 in RMK-12 on Developing Future Talent,” he said.
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