KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 6 (Bernama) -- Unlike many countries which favour
only skilled migrants and put up many barriers for unskilled workers,
it is a different picture in Malaysia.
The Malaysian Government allows unskilled and semi-skilled migrants to work in the country, most of whom are in the construction, plantation and service sectors, as well as domestic care, said United Nations (UN) Resident Coordinator for Malaysia Kamal Malhotra.
"Economic migration can be a win-win proposition and is fairly evident in the Malaysian case.
"For example, it is very clear that a lot of Malaysian women cannot be part of the workforce unless they had domestic care from domestic helpers from the Philippines or Indonesia," said Malhotra.
He was speaking to reporters after the launch of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Human Development Report 2009 (HDR) by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop here Tuesday.
At the end of last year, Malhotra said the Malaysian labour force was almost 12 million, which included about 2.1 million legal migrants from Bangladesh, Indonesia and other Asian countries.
Malhotra said that apart from the support provided for development, the positive impacts these migrants had, resonated far beyond Malaysia's borders, adding that their remittances to their respective countries raised the quality of life for their families.
Meanwhile, according to the UNDP's 2009 HDR report, more gains from migration could be gained if migration policy was built into national development policy, allowing both high and low-skilled workers to complement the local workforce, in line with Malaysia's plan of transition to a high income economy by 2020.
Due to its economic prosperity and rapid economic growth over many decades, the report cites Malaysia as a major destination country for poorer citizens of neighbouring countries.
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