Malaysia’s labour force continued to indicate a positive momentum with an increase of 2.3 per cent year-on year to 16.34 million persons in the second quarter of this year (Q2 2022).
The Labour Market Review for Q2 2022 released by the Department of Statistics Malaysia today cited that the increase was spurred on by the nation’s transition into the endemic phase.
The Labour Force Participation Rate (LFPR) rose 0.9 percent to 69.2 per cent, recording a higher LFPR than 69.1 per cent prior to the pandemic or of Q4 2019.
The number of employed persons rose by 3.2 per cent to record 15.70 million persons while the employment-to-population ratio continued an upward trend to 66.5 per cent.
In the meantime, the number of unemployed persons declined by 122.9 thousand to 642.0 thousand persons, registering an unemployment rate of 3.9 per cent which was the lowest rate recorded since the pandemic.
Concomitant to the country’s shift to the endemic phase, businesses had resumed in full swing at the normal pre-pandemic hours throughout Q2 2022. This was reflected in the labour market as the number of people working less than 30 hours per week registered a new low since the public health crisis in 2020, after a decline of 31.6 per cent from Q2 2021 to 324.5 thousand persons.
Accordingly, the rate of time-related underemployment declined 0.8 percentage points to
1.4 per cent. Meanwhile, skill-related underemployment which comprised more than one-third of employed persons with tertiary education decreased by 1.0 percentage point to 36.7 per cent in the quarter.
In terms of demand in the economic sector, the number of jobs continued to trend upwards by registering a year-on-year growth of 3.2 per cent to record a total of 8.62 million jobs.
Filled jobs which comprised of 97.8 per cent, elevated by 3.1 per cent over the same quarter of the preceding year to record 8.43 million.
Meanwhile, jobs opening in the economy which was indicated by the number of vacancies expanded at a faster pace by 7.5 per cent to 191.3 thousand vacancies during the same period.
As Malaysia’s economy registered a stronger growth of 8.9 per cent in Q2 2022 and employment continued its positive growth, labour productivity as measured by value added per employment posted an increase of 5.5 per cent registering the level of RM23,322 per person.
During the same period, total hours worked surged 7.5 per cent to 8.94 billion hours with removal of most of the social and economic restrictions following the country’s shift into the transition to endemic phase.
The review cited the labour productivity per hour worked grew by 1.3 per cent to bring the level of productivity at RM41.0 per hour.
DOSM opined that in entering the third quarter of 2022, it was observed that things had pretty much returned to normal as people have adapted to living with COVID-19.