Malaysia’s Labor Market Sustains Upward Trend in Q2

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Malaysia’s labor market sustained an upward trend in the second quarter of 2023, recording 16.73 million labor force, official data showed on Friday.

The Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM) said in a statement that the quarter saw slower growth in employment and a smaller decline in the unemployed.

“Further rise in demand for labor by industries has resulted in an increase in employment although at a slower pace in the second quarter, leading to a reduction in the unemployment rate compared to a year ago,” said the DOSM.

Reflecting the expansion in the economy, the labor force in Malaysia increased by 2.4 percent to 16.73 million, predominantly contributed by the growth of 2.8 percent in the employed, accounting for 16.15 million persons in the second quarter of 2023.

On the contrary, the number of unemployed declined by 9.5 percent year-on-year to 581,400, recording the national unemployment rate at 3.5 percent during the quarter.

Labor participation in Malaysia also registered the highest rate of 70 percent compared to the prior pandemic period, which escalated by 0.8 percentage points from the same quarter of 2022.

“Overall, the supply and demand for labor remained stable in the second quarter of 2023 as the economy continued to expand although moderately propelled by effective governance, improved consumer confidence and better business conditions,” said the DOSM.

After recording an improved performance in the first half of 2023, DOSM expected the labor market momentum in Malaysia to sustain a steady growth path in the upcoming quarter, supported by ongoing economic development, government initiatives, and quality investments that will generate high-quality and high-paying jobs.