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Jobs for 90,000 housewives

By: Rebecca Lewis, Malaysia
Published: Mar 11, 2013

GENDER BALANCE       RECRUITMENT

Malaysia – The Human Resources Ministry is aiming to get 90,000 women back into work under a newly-introduced programme.

The 1Malaysia Support for Housewives programme, which was introduced in July last year, allows thousands of unemployed women, including single parents, to provide supplementary income for their families.

Last year, more than 110,000 housewives participated in 10 programmes, and the Ministry’s deputy minister, Datuk Maznah Mazlan, said this allows women to earn between RM600 (S$240.90) and RM2,500 (S$1,003) a month, Bernama reported.

The programmes, which she hopes to see encourage at least 90,000 women back into the workforce, offer jobs such as handicrafts, making food and herbal products, sewing and product packaging.

The programme is being carried out with the cooperation of the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry, Defence Ministry, the Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry, the Rural and Regional Development Ministry, the Finance Ministry, the Higher Education Ministry, and other agencies.

The jobs offered to participants include sewing, making handicraft, food and herbal products and product packaging.

A separate survey, the Grant Thorton International Business Report (IRB), revealed that while Malaysia has the highest number of women in the workforce when compared to other Asean countries (40%), it has the lowest number of women in senior roles (26%).

Data also showed Malaysia is the third lowest globally to have women on the board of companies as the chairman, CEO, CFO, executive and non-executive directors.

"The positions held most by women in the senior management are human resource director (37%), chief financial officer (36%) and sales director (23%)," the report stated.

Grant Thornton's managing partner Datuk NK Jasani said businesses need to "wake up" to gender disparity and add more women to the workforce to ensure long-term growth and profitability.

"Gender diversity is good for business as it increases financial performance, enriches brand perception in the marketplace, improves problem-solving, enhances team and individual creativity, as well as boost employee satisfaction and retention," he said.
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