Malaysia’s Unemployment Rate Dips to 4.6% in April 2021
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries commenced self-imposed quarantine on their citizens. As a result, restricting the movement meant that certain economic sectors will have to temporarily be shut down. Some businesses suffered monetary loss and had to resort to cutting down staff. Without a doubt, unemployment became a significant problem for many people.
Given the extensive numbers of Movement Control Orders (MCO’s) since the first in 2020, Malaysia is no exception. The rate of unemployment has fluctuated since March 2020 when MCO started. In May 2020, the unemployment rate went to 3.9%, which is the highest since June 2010. However, Malaysia’s unemployment rate took a turn and dipped to 4.6% in April 2021. Compared to 4.7% in March of last year, the employment rate in Malaysia is showing signs of improvement by slowly and steadily increasing, according to DOSM.
The Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) contributes to such boosts by allowing industries to resume near-full capacity, though this is done with strict rules and regulations. The number of unemployed persons was reduced from 753 thousand to 742.7 thousand. A significant difference of about 1.4%, which is roughly 10.5 thousand individuals being hired, between April and May 2021.
The MCO is still ongoing and only sectors and services that are essential are operating. The government had also implemented a series of financial reliefs to help soften the impact. Plus, the government is also expecting the RMCO to improve the current labour market. Thus, the ongoing controlled lockdown allows certain businesses to resume at full capacity whilst also being compliant with the SOPs.
As stated previously, Malaysia’s unemployment rate dips by about 1.4% and employment are now on the rise. DOSM has published various statistics to further elaborate on the labour market. The DOSM had also made predictions for how the labour market will fluctuate till the end of May 2021.
The DOSM concluded: much of the increase in employment is in wholesale, retail, food, beverages, education, health and social services. The same applies to manufacturing and construction. However, agriculture, mining and quarrying sectors are not inclining as much.
May 2021 can be challenging given the rising rate of infection. This invariably causes certain sectors to shut down temporarily. Even if these sectors resume operation, the government will impose strict SOP’s and require some to work from home. Nevertheless, these challenges are expected to subside in months to come due to vaccination efforts by the Malaysian government.
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