GEORGE TOWN: The Cabinet has agreed to set up a task force to create one million quality job opportunities, says Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman.
The Youth and Sports Minister said the task force will be chaired by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, and will include relevant departments, corporate companies and organisations.
“This is to fulfil Pakatan Harapan’s manifesto in creating quality job opportunities for the people, and we hope to collaborate with the private sector.
“If we look at the report by Bank Negara and Khazanah Research Institute (KRI) last month, we can see that there is a problem with the wage ladder,” he said after launching the Penang Youth Festival at Pesta Site in Sungai Nibong on Sunday (April 21).
“This is why we need to collaborate with the corporate sector to raise the bar for youths’ salaries, especially those with degrees as the wage level has become static now,” he added.
Syed Saddiq said allegations about youths being lazy, incompetent, and immature while being too demanding of their expected salaries were not true.
“The study by Bank Negara and KRI has proven that youths do not seek or expect a lavish pay cheque, what they want is only a dignified wage.
“But in current times, the salary level is static, so we will need to look into this to address the issue raised by Bank Negara and KRI,” he said.
He added that they were hoping to create more quality job opportunities like the 300 job vacancies created after bringing in Razer, a Singapore-based gaming hardware maker.
Syed Saddiq said skills mismatch and companies’ preference for foreign workers are also causes for youth unemployment in the country.
“To solve a problem, we need to first understand it, and now the two causes are skill mismatch and preference for foreign workers.
“Our graduates might have good degrees, certificates and all but when they enter the market, they were given a mismatched salary due to skill mismatch and some cannot find a suitable job as companies prefer to hire foreign talents,” he added.