According to The Star, Penang chief minister Lim Guan Eng said that Penang would not be affected by a recent retrenchment claim by the Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF). Earlier, MEF had mentioned that over 50,000 Malaysians were expected to lose their jobs this year.

MEF executive director Datuk Shamsudin Baradan reportedly said “the job market would hit hard, with the manufacturing sector being the most affected”. He also said this would be followed by the service sector in industries such as insurance, banking and retail, as well as construction.

However, CM Lim expressed a different opinion for Penang. He said: “In fact, we are still short of workers, as I mentioned earlier 20,000 workers.”

When it comes to the tourism sector, Lim said the number of tourists visiting Penang had also increased.

“Our hotels, unlike other states which had recorded a decline, have posted an increase. (This) not just on the island but also on the mainland,” he commented.

Lim said the Penang International Airport was also a testament to the growth of the state, in that it had exceeded its capacity of 6.5 million passengers.

“In 2016, we exceeded 6.7 million passengers, so we have exceeded (passenger) capacity four years (sooner than expected),” he said, before adding that the airport had only expected to exceed its passenger capacity by 2020.

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