Malaysia’s Unemployment Rate In May 2022 Remains At 3.9%
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(Image: The Star/Yap Chee Hong)

Malaysia’s unemployment rate in May 2022 remained unchanged from the previous month at 3.9%, according to the latest labour report from the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM). Despite that, the number of unemployed persons declined by 1.8%, from 649,300 persons in April to 637,700 persons in May. 

Based on the report, 83.7% of the total unemployed persons in May consisted of actively unemployed persons – described as individuals who are unemployed and are actively seeking employment. The number of actively unemployed persons decreased by 1.6%, from 542,900 persons in April to 534,000 persons in May. Additionally, 58.6% of the total unemployed persons were unemployed for less than three months, while 6.9% were without a job for more than a year.

Meanwhile, the number of inactively unemployed persons – defined as those who believe that there are no jobs available – fell by 2.5%. This translates to a decrease from 106,400 persons in April to 103,800 persons in May.

As for the number of employed persons, the labour report indicated that this category posted an increase of 0.3%, from 15.85 million persons in April to 15.9 million persons in May. The employee’s category – which encompassed 76.2% of the employed persons’ group – rose by 0.2%, from 12.09 million persons in April to 12.11 million persons in May. Similarly, the own-account worker’s category also improved from 2.72 million persons in April to 2.74 million persons in May, recording a 0.7% increase. 

In addition, the labour report also noted that the number of employed persons who were temporarily not working in May rose by 6.5% to register 94,100 persons, as compared to 88,300 persons in the previous month. The increase was in part due to the Aidilfitri festive season during the month. 

On the overall labour force performance in May, chief statistician of DOSM, Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin remarked that the labour market has continued to stabilise. This was in line with the full operation of all economic activities in the country. 

“The encouraging economic activities during the month (May) stimulated more demand for goods and services, thus providing more opportunities for businesses to revive their revenues. The labour market is also observed to expand as more demand and supply of labour prevails in the market to accommodate the needs of the growing economic activities,” Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir further said, noting that the labour force situation in May remained resilient with steady employment growth and further decrease in unemployment. 

(Image: Malay Mail/Shafwan Zaidon)

However, Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir commented that the rising prices of commodities in the market have directly affected Malaysia’s economic recovery. This is made worse by China’s zero-Covid policy, which led to a delay in the supply of materials, thereby affecting the manufacturing sector.

Despite the situation, the chief statistician remarked that the labour market in the country is expected to continue to be on a positive trajectory in the coming months. This will be driven by the full operation of all economic sectors and social activities, as well as the entry of foreign labour into the country to address labour shortages in certain industries. However, the country’s recovery will also be influenced by the impending effects of the global inflationary pressures, he added. 

(Source: DOSM [1, 2, 3])

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