Labour Day:  Minimum salary RM1, 500 is a gift for workers’ dedication to the national economic development –PM Ismail

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PUTRAJAYA MAY 1: As recognition to the workers’ contribution in generating the national economy, the government has agreed to have at least one million self employed Malaysian Family members to be protected under the Social Security Organisation’s (SOCSO) Self-Employment Social Security Scheme.

Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said, under the scheme the government will bear 80 per cent from the amount required to be contributed by the individual.

Ismail Sabri also said the government had agreed to make it mandatory for public sector workplaces to set up nurseries, involving both federal and state governments as well as statutory bodies.

“For this purpose, the government had provided a grant of RM10 million in 2019 and RM30 million annual grants starting 2020 for the initiative, to provide relief to employees with small children,” Ismail said in his Labour Day speech with the theme “Workers are the Pillars for Malaysian Family in National Recovery” aired on TV1 Sunday morning.

Ismail has also announced the Keluarga Malaysia Vehicle Insurance Financing programme,

Elaborating on this, the Prime Minister said, this programme is a financing package in instalments up to 10 months without any interest charges, and will be offered to civil servants before it would be extended to the private sector.

“The Human Resources Ministry in collaboration with SOCSO and Angkatan Koperasi Kebangsaan Malaysia Berhad (Angkasa) will implement this programme.”

“The set minimum wage of RM1, 500 that comes into effect today is a gift to workers for their tireless dedication in developing the country’s economy,” Ismail said.

According to the Prime Minister, the reopening of the country’s borders had allowed the reemployment of foreign workers, especially in 3D (dirty, dangerous, and difficult) sectors.

He said, this move was not to alienate local workers, as a comprehensive mechanism would be devised for the country to reduce its dependence on foreign workers, thus prioritising local workers.

“The Human Resources Ministry has been asked to look into and study this aspect so that local workers can benefit through better salary rates, employment packages and career advancement.

“The government has also launched the UpSkills Malaysia portal for workers to improve their skills, making it a single reference centre which provides information on 6,143 training providers covering 35 skill areas,” he said.

Ismail added, the government is committed to protecting the rights of both local and foreign workers, especially on issues related to forced labour.

“As such, the government had ratified Protocol 29 of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) as a proof of the government’s commitment to eradicating forced labour in the country.

“This ratification is a proactive action by the government to ensure that Malaysian products and goods are no longer restricted from entering the international market due to the alleged use of forced labour in the country,” Ismail reiterated.

In protecting the rights of Keluarga Malaysia workers, Ismail added, the government had introduced and implemented several initiatives including approving amendments to the Employment Act 1955 to extend maternity leave to 98 days and granting a seven-day paternity leave.

The government had also reduced weekly working hours from 48 hours to 45 hours to promote work-life balance, and increased the ceiling of the insured monthly salary from RM4, 000 to RM5, 000, benefitting 9 million workers, especially SOCSO contributors nationwide.

“To encourage workers to be active in trade unions, the Trade Union Act 1959 is in the process of amendment and has passed for its first reading in the Dewan Rakyat on 24th March 2022.

“The government has allocated a total of RM267 million via SOCSO to improve its operations involving the contribution rate and benefits offered,” Ismail said.

He also said the minimum rate for retirement pension paid to eligible dependents has been increased from RM475 to RM550 per month, benefitting 56,000 households.

The government he said is confident that Keluarga Malaysia workers will remain resilient and continue to become strategic partners in developing the country’s economy.

“Once again, I would like to express my deepest gratitude and wish Happy Labour Day to all workers, and leaders and members of trade unions in the country.

“I would like to wish Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri to all Muslim Keluarga Malaysia, especially to all workers,” he added. –Malaysia World News

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