Ministry to step up initiatives to lure back M'sian talents abroad

KUCHING (Aug 3, 2013): The Human Resource Ministry will step up its initiatives to lure back Malaysian talents working abroad in line with the country's economic transformation, its minister Datuk Richard Riot said today.

Riot, who was confident that country's brain drain would be a thing of the past one day, said he had a meeting with the Talent Corporation Malaysia Berhad (Talent Corp) and small and medium enterprise (SMEs) representatives recently on the need to revamp strategies to get these talents back to Malaysia as there was already an urgency to do that.

"The good news is that most of those, who have been approached by us (ministry), were quite receptive to the idea to come back to work because many of them said 'there is no place better than home,'" he told reporters here after officiating at the Sarawak Bidayuh Graduates Association triennial general meeting at the Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA) headquarters here.

Citing a meeting he had, while still serving as Deputy Foreign Minister, with over 30 Malaysian specialist doctors working at public hospitals in Ireland and the United Kingdom, he said 90 per cent of them indicated an interest to come back. He said, it was up to the Health Ministry to decide and come up with a Cabinet paper for approval on the matter.

Earlier, he said, even though the unemployment rate among Sarawakians was still low at 3.5 percent last year of the total labour force of about 1.2 million compared to 3.4 per cent out of a total workforce of 12.8 million nationwide, there was an improvement compared to 4.6 percent the previous year.

There was an abundance of opportunities in various industries, involving agriculture and plantation, manufacturing, construction, services, oil and gas, electrical, mining and quarrying, finance and insurance, wholesale and retail, transportation, forestry, fishing and others, Riot said.

He said labour statistics showed that there were 10,057 graduates in Sarawak registered with the state Labour Department as at May this year, including 5,557 or 55.3 per cent who were degree holders and above while the rest were diploma holders.

As for non graduates, he said of the total 19,671 active registrants, 17.2 per cent were Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM)holders, 10.5 percent had skills certificates, 64.1 percent Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) school leavers, six per cent with Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) qualification, 1.9 per cent less than PMR and 0.2 percent with no formal education.

He also reminded the Bidayuh graduates to always stay united and strive hard for the welfare of their community as such records showed that they must be the beacon of light in guiding the less fortunate to get into the labour market.

"We, Bidayuhs have some success stories among us. So be a good role model. Set a good example for our young because this is the time to give back to society - the very society which have given us so much," he said, adding that the community's unity was well rewarded in the last general election, which saw his appointment as a full minister and another Bidayuh, Datuk Dr James Dawos, as a deputy minister in the federal cabinet by the nation's top leadership. – Bernama