The 11th Malaysia Plan will focus on creating skillful, knowledgeable and innovative human capital to meet the requirements of the industry, among other priorities.
The mid-term review of the 11th Malaysia Plan was presented in Parliament on 18 October 2018 by Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad. The plan focuses on six policy pillars: reforming governance towards greater transparency and enhancing the efficiency of public service, enhancing inclusive development and wellbeing, pursuing balanced regional development, empowering human capital, enhancing environmental sustainability through green growth, and strengthening economic growth.
The plan aims to reform existing policies and outline the revised socioeconomic targets for 2018-2020.
Human capital development will continue to be a key priority to empower the workforce in supporting economic growth, says the report. Focus will be given to create skillful, knowledgeable and innovative human capital to meet the requirements of the industry. Human capital development initiatives will provide opportunities for quality employment as well as ensure access to quality education and training towards building a more inclusive, equitable and prosperous nation. These will be implemented through four priority areas, namely reforming the labor market, improving labor efficiency and productivity, enhancing access to quality education and training as well as fostering stronger industry-academia linkages.
Priority areas and strategies
The government will intensify efforts in addressing issues of inadequate creation of skilled jobs, low wage growth, high youth unemployment rate, and graduate underemployment as well as skills mismatch. “Several initiatives will be undertaken to generate more skilled jobs, identify critical skills and address skills shortage as well as raising salaries and wages commensurate with productivity level,” says the report.
The government will undertake efforts to reduce dependency on foreign workers by promoting greater automation and strictly regulate the number of foreign workers by introducing multi-tiered levies. In addition, labor efficiency and productivity will be improved by strengthening workers’ rights to enhance work conditions as well as increasing female participation in the labor force to expand the talent pool.
According to the plan, the government will take efforts in ensuring access to quality education and training that is inclusive and equitable. Students will be equipped with knowledge and diverse skills across all education levels to increase employability. Priority will also be given to raise the quality of education to improve student outcomes in preschool, primary and secondary education. Meanwhile, concerted efforts will be directed towards raising the quality of graduates as well as academic programs and strengthening research capabilities. In addition, the autonomous status of public universities will be leveraged to ensure financial sustainability.
Efforts will also be intensified to improve the quality of TVET in improving the employability of TVET graduates. Emphasis will be given to review TVET program been offered, implement harmonized accreditation system and strengthen TVET as a preferred education pathway.