KEPALA BATAS: The salary of skilled workers is too low, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim while suggesting that these highly sought after employees should be paid between RM2,500 and RM3,000.
Currently, technical and vocational education and training (TVET) graduates get a monthly income of between RM1,800 and RM2,000, which is insufficient, the Prime Minister noted.
“If we continue to increase their skills, similar to the training obtained by graduates from the Penang Skills Development Centre, then they should be earning between RM2,500 and RM3,000.
“This is what companies like Tesla and Aramco, which have announced huge investments in Malaysia, have promised.
“We must seize this opportunity to upgrade the skills of our TVET graduates,” he said at a dialogue session with the TVET community here yesterday.
The event was part of a three-day TVET expo, organised by the Rural and Regional Development Ministry.
Anwar said the top management of Tesla and Chinese automobile manufacturer Geely had praised Malaysian skilled workers, but he viewed that there is still room for improvement.
“They are impressed with our skills ability, discipline and being multilingual,” he said.
He said more people are interested in pursuing TVET programmes and to show the government’s commitment in developing this sector, an allocation of RM6.8bil had been set aside for technical and vocational education.
“One must not look down on skills training as TVET is now given the same respect and is on par with academic education.
“We are moving away from conventional education. While academic education is still important, TVET is relevant to the Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR 4.0),” he added.
Anwar, when responding to questions from the audience, shared that the government has been working with Universiti Kuala Lumpur to train more lecturers for TVET programmes.
He also said the IR 4.0 and digital technology advancements are all pointing in the direction of TVET.
“We just need to enhance our quality of training and raise the minimum pay offered to fresh graduates.
“They will definitely show interest in this field. The industry trains them, gives them the certification and then absorbs them into companies,” he added.