The country has been aggressive in its financial support of the workforce.
By Zee Johnson
So far this year, the Malaysian government has created 320,000 jobs through the National Employment Council (NEC), an initiative established to help targeted groups find employment. The Official Portal of Ministry of Finance Malaysia says the council’s primary goal is to create 500,000 jobs and skills training placements by adjoining government agencies to local businesses.
The PenjanaKerjaya programme, a spawn of the NEC, continued this effort by allocating RM2 billion dollars to assist in pandemic relief efforts. An update to the programme, PenjanaKerjaya 2.0, has helped more than 140,000 natives secure employment. A third installment of the programme is set to come.
“Meanwhile, PenjanaKerjaya 3.0 has been introduced under the People’s Well-being and Economic Recovery Package (PEMULIH), with several improvements incorporated,” said Finance Minister, Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz. “Among them are reducing the salary eligibility limit under the Malaysianisation programme and easing the employment contract period for workers aged 50 and above, the disabled and ex-prisoners.”
Along with creating jobs, the Malaysian government also plans to support entrepreneurs, and small and medium businesses and their employees to further sustain COVID relief.
“Among them is an allocation of almost RM20 billion for the Wage Subsidy Programme and so far RM15.6 billion has been channelled, benefiting more than 330,000 employers and preventing 2.8 million workers from losing their jobs,” Tengku Zafrul said. “SMEs that experience a reduction in income due to Covid-19 will be given a wage subsidy of RM600 per month for each employee, limited to 500 employees.”
The cost of the country’s pandemic relief efforts have been aggressive and mimic those seen in the United States, South Korea, and Indonesia. Since last year, Malaysia has introduced eight economic packages amounting to RM530 billion.