The number of Malaysian job vacancies fell 35% year-on-year, as more graduates and job seekers enter the employment market.
According to a report by Jobs Malaysia, the number of job vacancies fell from 167,968 to 107,796 in June this year.
The biggest reasons behind the softening job market are the extended retirement age, higher operational costs and an uncertain global economy.
Shamsuddin Bardan, executive director of the Malaysian Employers Federation, said with the extended retirement age – which came into effect in July, more than 915,000 workers have been retained in the private sector, limiting job openings and opportunities for those new to the workforce.
“Some employers are already offering the voluntary separation scheme (VSS) and other packages for employees to leave, so the likelihood of them taking in fresh graduates is very slim,” he told The Star, adding Malaysia’s current unemployment rate stands at about 3%.
The outlook is expected to remain gloomy for a while, as 180,000 fresh graduates anticipated to enter the job market annually, particularly after convocations in September and October.
“Many employers also prefer to adopt a ‘wait and see’ attitude because of the uncertain world economy. They are also bracing themselves for the full impact of the minimum wage policy in January,” Shamsuddin added.