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Drop in Sabah jobless grads
Published on: Monday, January 22, 2024
By: Mohd Izham Bin Hashim
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Drop in Sabah jobless grads
Mustapha noted figures issued by the Ministry through the Graduate Detection Research System (SKPG) in 2022, showing the number of unemployed graduates which stood at 29,099 was reduced by 12,368 graduates compared to the previous year (41,467 unemployed graduates). 
Kota Kinabalu: The rate of unemployment among graduates in Sabah continued to show a downward trend, with 7.6 per cent from 14.2 per cent in 2022, compared to 21.8 per cent in 2021, said Deputy Higher Education Minister, Datuk Mustapha Sakmud. 

He pointed out that the decline reflects the Government’s efforts in developing quality human resources in the State through joint initiatives with the government, private sector, education institutions and industry players. 

“Enhancing cross-industry collaboration is key to developing quality human resources and enhancing employability in measures to tackle the issue of marketability among graduates in Sabah,” he said. 

Speaking at the MyFutureJobs 2024 Career Carnival @ Mohe Zone Borneo, Mustapha called for more programmes such as the career carnival and dialogue sessions between industry and academia to be organised periodically. 

“Both private and public institutions of higher learning (IPT) need to ensure efforts to produce quality graduates who are ready for the global marketplace, relevant is realised to ensure they are equipped with the competitive edge to penetrate local and international job markets,” he added. 

Mustapha noted figures issued by the Ministry through the Graduate Detection Research System (SKPG) in 2022, showing the number of unemployed graduates which stood at 29,099 was reduced by 12,368 graduates compared to the previous year (41,467 unemployed graduates). 

“The rate of graduate unemployment was slashed by 4.7 per cent from 9.8 per cent compared to 14.5 per cent in the previous year,” he said. 

Nationally, the Minister noted the Department of Statistics (DOSM) indicated the number of unemployed persons stood at 569,200 for the fourth quarter of 2023, noting the rate continues to fall by 0.3 per cent (570,900 persons) in the previous quarter. 

“The marketability of graduates is a hot topic in the higher education landscape of the country amid the contentious issue of graduate unemployment and jobs mismatch,” he said. 

Furthermore, he said the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic left a major impact on various economic aspects which drastically affected job opportunities. 

Mustapha noted the issue of unemployment still commands serious attention despite the improved performance of the labour force which recorded a 0.2 per cent jump monthly, resulting in a working population of 16.43 million as opposed to 16.40 million in October 2023.  

He said graduates should possess critical thinking abilities, leadership skills, effective teamwork capabilities, and a global perspective.

“In a rapidly changing world filled with economic uncertainty, graduates must be prepared to compete for future job opportunities,” said Mustapha. 

He reiterated the Ministry of Higher Education’s (KPT) commitment to accelerate various initiatives towards boosting the employability of graduates, and ensuring they secure jobs that match their qualifications.

Some notable examples include Career Development programmes such as the Intervention Programme for Graduate Employability, Penjana KPT0CAP, KPT-Pace, among others.

“This career carnival provides immense benefits which not only provides job opportunities but also contribute to the development of various industry sectors while enhancing the state’s socio economy,” he added. 

Among those who attended the career carnival include Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic and International), Professor Dr Shahril bin Yusof.

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Keywords:
unemployment, graduates





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