Nov 12, 2015

Director: Misperception Cause Of Shortage Of Local Labour

MIRI: Oil palm plantations, timber processing factories and construction are sectors that need local workforce.

This was disclosed by Sarawak Labour Department director Datu August Buma, who said the three sectors were short of local workers.

“The ‘3D perception’ on such sectors – Dirty, Difficult and Dangerous – seems to make the locals shy away from having interest in applying for jobs in the three sectors.

“And with such perception, it causes the high demand for non-resident workers or foreign workers in the three sectors,” he said when contacted yesterday.

On a related matter, August said skilled labour formed only 28 per cane of the country’s total labour force and needed to be increased to at least 35 per cent by 2020.

“Thus, Ministry of Human Resources plays an important role to cater for the supply and demand mechanism including to offer vocational and technical skills through a total of 32 vocational institutions under the ministry,” he said.

For Sarawak to achieve the status of developed state by 2030 and high income state by 2020, he said locals have to be trained and developed as skilled labour force.

“For example, in developed countries such as Singapore at least 50 per cent of the workforce is made up of skilled labour and in Germany 80 per cent are skilled labour as compared to lawyers,” he added.

Meanwhile, he said, in Sarawak the unemployment rate is 3.8 per cent which is consistent, as according to international statistics an unemployment rate of below four per cent is considered full-employment.

With the state emphasising on industrialisation which highly requires new skills, he advised the young people to equip themselves with skills to add to their employability.

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