500k new jobs next year through Janakerja scheme

KUALA LUMPUR – The government will implement an Employment Generation Guarantee Scheme (JanaKerja) involving the provision of 500,000 new jobs beginning next year.

Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz said that through the scheme, the government will allocate RM3.7 billion to create various upskilling and training programmes.

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“The average unemployment rate recorded in the last 10 years was 3.2 per cent or about 500,000 people. Following the COVID-19 pandemic, it has risen to 5.3 per cent or 820,000 jobless people in May, which is the highest since 1989.

Through the reopening of the economy and implementation of the Prihatin Rakyat Economic Stimulus Package and National Economic Recovery Plan (Penjana) initiatives, the unemployment rate dropped to 4.7 per cent in August,” he said during the tabling of Budget 2021 at the Dewan Rakyat today.

He said the government would also continue with its recruitment efforts under the Social Security Organisation (Socso), known as PenjanaKerjaya, through four incentives with an allocation of RM2 billion.

He said incentives for workers earning RM1,500 and above would be increased from a rate of RM800 a month to 40 per cent from their monthly salary and limited to an incentive of RM4,000 a month.

Secondly, employers will be given an additional incentive of 20 per cent, taking the overall incentive for employers to 60 per cent, to encourage job opportunities for people with disabilities (OKU), those unemployed for a long term and those whose services have been terminated.

“Thirdly, sectors with a high dependance on foreign workers, such as in construction and plantation, a special incentive of 60 per cent of the monthly salary will be provided, with 40 per cent channelled directly to employers and 20 per cent to local employees replacing the foreign workers.

“All these three incentives will be given for a period of six months,” he said.

Tengku Zafrul said that through the fourth incentive, those employed under PenjanaKerjaya, the maximum cost of the training programme that employers can claim would be raised from RM4,000 to RM7,000 for high-skilled or professional certificate programmes.

— BERNAMA