The 2011/2012 Economic Report`
KUALA LUMPUR: With growth in demand for labour outpacing supply, the economy will continue to operate under conditions of full employment this year.
According to the Treasury's 2011/2012 Economic Report, the country's labour force is projected to increase by 2.3 per cent to reach 12.6 million this year from 12.4 million last year, contributed by the increase in the number of persons employed in the economy.
Following these developments, the unemployment rate is expected to improve to 3.3 per cent or 419,000 unemployed persons in 2011 compared to 3.4 per cent or 424,200 last year.
The report says the percentage of the labour force with tertiary education is expected to improve to 26.9 per cent this year compared with 24.2 per cent last year, while the overall labour force participation rate is expected to increase from 64.3 per cent last year to 64.8 per cent this year mainly due to greater participation by the younger age cohort of 20 to 24 years.
In terms of gender, both male and female participation rates are anticipated to edge up to 80 per cent and 49 per cent respectively compared with 79.8 per cent and 48 per cent in 2010, the report says.
The number of active job seekers registered with JobsMalaysia declined 3.5 per cent in the first eight months of this year to 342,198 people from 354,645 last year with the majority (60.6 per cent) of the job seekers graduates (degree and diploma holders) while 29.7 per cent were Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia school leavers.
There were 1,353,114 jobs vacancies registered with JobsMalaysia during the first eight months of this year.
The number of retrenched workers remained low at 6,751 in the first eight months of 2011 with 87 per cent were locals while the remaining were foreigners.
The number of foreign workers as at end of December 2010 accounted for 15.2 per cent of the workforce and following government's efforts to further reduce the dependency on low-skilled foreign workers, the share of foreign workers to total workforce declined to 10.7 per cent. The workers were mainly from Indonesia, Nepal, Myanmar, Bangladesh, India and Vietnam.
The report notes that attracting highly skilled expatriates will facilitate the country's transition to a knowledge and innovation-based high income economy.
As end at end of August this year, a total of 41,831 expatriates were employed, particularly in the services sector (23,763), manufacturing (12,355), construction (2,188) and education (1,308). -- Bernama