Foreign Workers in Malaysia

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Malaysia has long prided itself as a model of ethnic harmony. There are about 21 million (July 1997) people in Malaysia from diverse backgrounds/races. It can be said that in diversity there is unity because in Malaysia all the races work and live together. The Immigrants to Malaysia are attracted by the low unemployment rates, as well, particularly those from Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and the Philippines.The country's three main races Malays, Chinese and Indians now find the problem of the situation an increasing numbers of foreign workers. As of December 2008, there were 2.06 million foreign workers in Malaysia, which relies heavily on them to help out in the construction and plantation sectors. Most of the workers are sourced from Indonesia, India, Bangladesh and Nepal. Despite the economic downturn and rising retrenchment in Malaysia, Bangladeshi workers were still in demand as they were hardworking, efficient, obedient, easy to train and did not demand a high salary. Workers were known to be able to handle multiple tasks. The demand for foreign workers in the two sectors (plantation and construction) is very high at this moment. In spite of that, government cannot freeze on hiring foreign workers was only confined to the services sector. Locals had shied away from working in the two (plantation and construction) sectors. For locals to take up jobs in these sectors, there will have to be changes to make them attractive. The Human Resources Ministry is unhappy that some employers continue to employ foreign workers in sectors which have a huge bearing on the country's image. These include airports, hotels, restaurants, clinics and petrol stations. These are not suitable areas for foreign workers. They can be employed in sectors that are being shunned by locals such as in the plantation and manufacturing sectors or as domestic helpers. There are too many foreign workers already in the country and, besides, many of them have been laid off, causing...
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