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Malaysian government ban foreign hiring in services sectors



Malaysian government ban foreign hiring in services sectors


Kuala Lumpur, Jan 22, 2009
Ashok Sharma

The Malaysian government announced a ban on the hiring of foreign labour in factories, stores, restaurants and services sectors.

According to New Straits Times, on Wednesday, Human Resources Minister S. Subramaniam said that cabinet members felt the time had come to look at the welfare of locals who faced possible lay-offs. More than 10,000 Malaysians have lost their jobs because of the slowdown in the country's export-dependent economy, while another 45,000 are predicted to be out of work by the end of the year.

More than 2 million legal foreign workers are working in factories, stores and restaurants. They can continue until their contracts expire or until they are laid off, but fresh recruitment of foreigners will not be approved.

S Subramaniam, the Malaysian human resources minister announced:

  • Malaysia "can put a stop to hiring" foreign workers if they are not needed. Skilled foreign labour needed mostly in the manufacturing of electronic and electrical goods, textiles and furniture may also be exempted.
  • The companies to lay off foreign employees first if they must slash their work force, a Human Resources Ministry official said.
  • We must protect Malaysians from the threat of mass unemployment.
  • No new non-Malaysian workers will be approved

According to the latest official data, Malaysia's unemployment rate stands at 3.3 percent.

Malaysia is exposed to the global slowdown as it exports the equivalent of 100 percent of gross domestic product and many private sector economists now say that the country will fall into its first

Syed Hamid Albar, Home Minister said he would discuss with Subramaniam how the new decision could be implemented. The petrol station owners should stop employing foreigners had fallen on deaf ears. "I see foreigners working there. This is a clear breach of government policy." The people should extend their cooperation to the government as it worked to face the weakening economic situation.



Human Resources Minister S. Subramaniam