KUALA LUMPUR: The median monthly salaries and wages of graduates with full-time equivalent principal occupation was RM3,936 in 2018 compared with RM3,550 in 2017, according to the Statistics Department.
“Employed graduates in skilled category earned RM4,684 while semi-skilled category received RM2,139, ” according to the department's salaries and wages survey 2018.
The chief statistician, Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said 4.96 million persons or 20.3% of Malaysia’s working age population in 2018 are graduates.
“Labour force participation rate for graduates was 83.6%, encompasses 4.15 million persons. Out of this, employed graduates accounted for 3.99 million persons, an increase of 8.2% from 3.69 million in 2017, ” he said.
Graduates in this statistical report were defined as individuals aged 15 years and over with the highest certificate obtained from universities, colleges, polytechnics, recognised bodies or equivalent, where duration of study is at least two years.
The report showed that overall, the number of employed female graduates in 2018 was marginally higher than male, recording a percentage share of 50.4% or 2.01 million persons.
From the viewpoint of age groups, graduates in younger age cohorts of 34 years and below were predominantly female.
On the contrary, employed graduates in older age cohorts of 35 years and over comprised of more males than females.
Male employed graduates aged 35 to 44 years accounted for 51.8% while males aged 45 years and over, represented 58.9%.
“Befitting with qualification as graduates, most were employed in the skilled category which accounted for 73.8% or 2.9 million persons.
“Employed graduates in semi-skilled category comprised of 25%, recording 998,200 persons in 2018. Looking at the distribution of employed graduates by economic activity, more than two third (79.7%) were concentrated in services sector,"the report said.
Graduates’ unemployment rate in 2018 was slightly lower at 3.9% compared to 4% in 2017. In terms of number, unemployed graduates in Malaysia totalled 162,000 persons.
Commenting on the graduates’ unemployment, Mohd Uzir pointed out more than 70% of unemployed graduates were actively seeking work and were available for work.
A total of 79.7% of graduates were unemployed for the duration of less than six months, followed by 11.9% which were unemployed between six months and less than a year.
Long term unemployment that is those who were unemployed for a period of over a year accounted for 8.4%.
Meanwhile, 16.4% or 811,8000 of graduates were outside labour force where 34.5% were due to housework or family responsibility. Those who are attending school or training programme made up of 30.5%, followed by reasons of retirement or old age (27.8%).
Mohd Uzir said graduates are the enablers of innovation and productivity that will lead the country to achieve sustainable growth.
“To realise this, it is essential that all parties assess the supply aspects and employability of graduates in Malaysia. Thus, I believe this statistical report can provide insights especially for the government to formulate related policies in line with the 2030 Shared Prosperity Vision, ” he said.
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