Malaysia is currently undergoing rapid demographic changes. The population size increases in each passing year the rate of growth has decelerated to 1.7% between 2010 and 2020, from 2.1% a decade earlier. Furthermore, the non – Malaysian citizens are making up an increasing share of the total population in the country. Malaysia must step up efforts to ensure that the locals rights are protected.
There are some ways we can use to improve Malaysia’s demographics such as creating incentives for the community. During the yearly budget meeting, the ministers must set aside some percentages of the budget for the people in case the country is facing natural catastrophes, such as floods, drought, epidemic and COVID-19 which the whole world is currently facing. By providing incentives for the people, it can help lessen their burden and also improve living conditions. We must also make the Malaysian locals as main priorities when hiring new workers. Our country is one of the preferred countries where immigrants came to work and some of these immigrants have better living conditions than our locals. Although during the early phase of the COVID-19 pandemic most immigrants who are working under a contract are sent back to their home country, some immigrants are still entering this country illegally.
The elderly population aged 60 years and over will increase rapidly, to make up 15% of the total population by 2030. The government must create incentives for young couples to help them start their own family. The government can also help by renting apartments exclusively to these couples, providing marriage counselling and creating nurseries for the working parents. There are emerging issues concerning marriage as couples ended up in divorce in a matter of months after tying the knot, caused by mental illnesses and rising cost of living.
Malaysia is currently in the endemic phase, people are working in hybrid conditions where some go to the office and others works from home. But even with these new norms there are still some unemployed individuals. Unemployment is even more challenging for those who are the breadwinner, living alone or have chronically ill family members. But there is always a rainbow after a heavy storm, more and more companies begin to participate in the career fest where they set up booths searching for newcomers. This booth provides a two way process, where the interviewer can assess the interviewee to decide if he or she is suitable for the open roles in the company.
The pandemic has changed Malaysia’s demographic drastically. In the year 2018 almost 15% of foreign workers dominate the Malaysia workforce and began to decrease when the pandemic happened. By focusing on the Malaysians who are in need, slowly but surely we can create a better community where the millennial can stand on their own. The government and community have begun to take actions to ensure that the peoples can continue living their life by providing multiple incentives and creating opportunities. There is a high chance if Malaysia keeps up doing these steps, we can create a resilient future where people’s rights are protected, exclusive opportunities and assure them that they do have multiple choices, not just one.
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Pemenang Pertandingan Penulisan Esei Kependudukan Bersempena Sambutan Hari Penduduk Sedunia 2022: Nurul Izah Athirah Baharuddin, UiTM Kampus Arau.