THE HOLLOWING OUT BEGINS: OVER 31,000 MALAYSIANS RETRENCHED THIS YEAR & ‘MANY MORE’ TO COME AS MNCs RETURN OVERSEAS
PETALING JAYA: Some 31,476 Malaysians were retrenched in the first nine months of this year and many more are expected by the end of the year.
Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) Executive Director Datuk Shamsuddin Bardan said many will lose their jobs due to the volatile market and the depreciating currency.
“More and more employers are forced to retrench their workers.What happened in US, UK and Europe will have a lot of bearing on the job market here,” he said during the press conference after the launch of MEF Salary Surveys 2016 here today.
He said if the newly elected US president Donald Trump takes a protective stance it will be more difficult for the export market.
“Same thing may happen in parts of Europe and UK for example. On the home front the market is not encouraging with the prices of products increasing and consumers not into buying which does not augur well for economic growth,” he added.
He said companies like Nike and Adidas are opening production factories in US and Germany.
“This never happened before, but due to the rising labour cost with better productivity in their homeland, companies find it viable to shift there,” he told theSun.
Shamsuddin also foresaw employers not paying bonuses and giving employees a pay raise due to the current scenerio.
Last year, he said, about 44,000 lost their jobs.
Sectors hard hit was the financial services, where almost 20,000 were retrenched last year due to the expansion of financial technology.
“Many banks closed their branch offices with consumers shifting to online banking. This may be followed by the insurance industry,” said Shamsuddin
This year, the services and manufacturing sectors may face more retrenchments, he said besides in the Oil and Gas field due to the volatility in the prices of petroleum.
“It is lesser for the time being because we still have 2.1 billion foreign workers as a buffer,” he explained.
Construction sector may apply a freeze but since it is on project basis it may not cause people to lose their jobs.
The safest sector, he said would be the plantation with no retrenchments.