12MP to address reliance on foreign labour

KUALA LUMPUR: The 12th Malaysia Plan will address the country’s over-reliance on hard labour, which now numbers some five million foreign workers, including those without permits, says Datuk Seri Azmin Ali.

The International Trade and Industry Minister said the Covid-19 pandemic had triggered the need for industry players to quickly shift to automation and robotics technology to reduce their reliance on the massive foreign workforce.

“This is among the aspects that will be emphasised in the 12th Malaysia Plan,” he said after opening the Azmida Technical College in Kampung Nakhoda here.

The pandemic, he said, had caused some from the M40 (middle income group) to fall into the B40 (low income) category while those already in the B40 were in a worst situation.

Earlier in his speech, Azmin said RM2mil had been set aside to sponsor 100 students to take up technical courses in Azmida.

The college is focused on promoting a skilled workforce in line with the Federal Government’s policy to attract high-tech investments and create high quality jobs.

“To attract high-tech investment, we must focus on human capital development to meet the requirements of the industry,” he said.

Azmida College, he said, also trained students from poor households, orphans, as well as the disabled.

He lauded training centres like Azmida College that provided opportunities for students from poor households to acquire high skills and enjoy a better life.

He called on technical colleges to provide courses in, among others, automation and chemistry, to meet the demands of new industries.

He also said there were currently 1,185 job openings at 105 companies in 16 sectors, including transport and textile.

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