PUTRAJAYA – The Government has called for more proactive measures to create new jobs to replace those that are rapidly disappearing under the assault of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Quoting a World Economic Forum (WEF) study, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said some 7.1 million jobs could potentially disappear between 2015 and 2020 from redundancies, automation and the diminishing role of the middlemen.
“We are now in the midst of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, where the agents of change come in the form of ICT, the Internet of Things, robotics, nanotechnology and task automation,” he said in his speech at the national-level Labour Day celebration here yesterday.
“In a report, WEF predicts the Fourth Industrial Revolution will bring significant effects to the labour market, including job displacements. The Government is taking this development very seriously, and we are always taking proactive measures to face this issue.
“These include venturing into Digital Economy, which is seen as the industry of the future. We launched the Digital Free Trade Zone, which is the world’s first digital globe trade platform outside of China, with an emphasis on expanding the digital market and producing more digital entrepreneurs.
“We have e-entrepreneurship programmes to help youths venture into online businesses.
“With initiatives like these, the Government expects the Digital Economy to provide 60,000 new jobs, which will contribute more than 20% to the national Gross Domestic Product,” said Najib, who added that programmes under the 11th Malaysia Plan emphasise innovation and productivity in order to generate wealth and create some 1.5 million new jobs.
The Prime Minister also pointed out several areas of transformation that the Government had pursued which are aimed at creating a better working culture.
These included prioritising worker welfare, introducing a national minimum wage, optimising human capital, enhancing technical and vocational education and training (TVET), improving online job centres, and expanding the coverage of social security. Najib also urged Malaysians to intensify efforts to become competent, creative and innovative workers.
“Train yourselves to multitask, to have multi-skills and to be multi-talented so that you are not only easily accepted in the workforce, but you will be recognised at the global stage.
“Inculcate a work culture that contributes to high productivity, high value, and high-level thinking so that you become high-income workers,” said Najib.
Some 5,000 workers from the public and private sectors attended the event, including Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri Richard Riot, Public Service Department director-general Datuk Seri Zainal Rahim Seman, Cuepacs president Datuk Azih Muda, Malaysian Trades Union Congress president Abdul Halim Mansor, and Malaysian Employers Federation president Tan Sri Azman Shah Haron. – The Star Online