Lawmaker: Tough to create 500k jobs without private sector support

THE Government would be hard pressed to achieve its target of creating 500,000 jobs without support from the private sector.

“Since Perikatan Nasional took over the Government last year, followed by the declaration of Emergency this year, investors’ confidence has dropped and foreign direct investments (FDI) plunged.

“The Government must end the Emergency, improve governance, fight corruption, be transparent and accountable in order to re-attract domestic and foreign investments to create jobs.

“However, with the current political climate, where the Government will do anything to remain in power, investor confidence is not likely to return any time soon,” Parliamentary Select Committee for International Relations and Trade chairman Wong Chen told FocusM.

Wong Chen

Two days ago, Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz said that the National Employment Council would be creating 500,000 jobs, with the support of the Jaminan Penjanaan Pekerjaan (JanaKerja) scheme.

“The JanaKerja scheme is expected to create 250,000 job opportunities, reskilling and upskilling programmes will have 200,000, and the Short-Term Employment. Program (MySTEP) scheme (will add) another 50,000 job opportunities,” he was reported saying.

More stimulus needed

However, Kepong MP Lim Lip Eng had argued yesterday that Tengku Zafrul’s grand ambition failed to answer several pertinent questions.

“The Government needs to answer three simple questions. One is, what type of jobs are they planning to create from the initiative?

“Question two is, how are they planning to create such gargantuan number of jobs for our unemployed citizens at a time when our private sector is suffering due to the COVID-19 triggered economic recession?

“And my last question is, when are they planning to fulfill the target and will they inform the public about it?” the DAP MP said to FocusM.

Addressing the subject, Wong Chen said that the Government should be pumping more funds into the economy if it wishes to create more jobs for the people.

“I applaud Finance Ministry’s initiative to create 500,000 jobs but its success will depend largely on how much money the Government is willing to channel into the economy,” he opined.

Wong Chen stated that last year alone, Malaysia lost about 300,000 jobs despite the Government spending approximately RM55 bil to keep the economy going.

Therefore, he added, the Government must be willing to pour in more than RM55 bil this year to create 500,000 jobs as targetted by the ministry.

“If not, the Janakerja scheme will end up being another public relations stunt, producing little results,” the Subang MP remarked. – March 9, 2021.

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