News Bites: 10 January 2018

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• Malaysia ranks the 4th in recent Employee Job Happiness Index 2017 by JobStreet.com
• Travelling Trends: A Sign of Good Economy
• Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Remains Top Premium Brand in Malaysia with Record Breaking performance in 2017
• Incorrect to Claim 50,000 Workers Will Be Retrenched – MITI
• Germany passport tops list of ‘most powerful’ globally in 2018 Henley Index

Malaysia ranks the 4th in recent Employee Job Happiness Index 2017 by JobStreet.com
In a recent Employee Job Happiness Index 2017 survey conducted by JobStreet.com, Malaysia ranked fourth out of seven countries within the same region for employees who are happy at their workplace, scoring 4.65 on a 10-point scale. With 10,143 Malaysian employees surveyed, more than half of the respondents (58%) reported that they are neutral to happy with their job. The survey results also showed that those employees working in the civil service, food and beverage, and medical industries are the happiest. Breaking down into specialisation, the happiest employees turned out to specialise in sales (Telesales/Telemarketing), engineering (Electrical & Civil Engineering) and healthcare (Nurses, medical support & assistant). In contrast, poor leadership, a lack of career development and training opportunities were flagged by respondents as the top three factors contributing to job unhappiness. “We see that ‘career development’ and ‘training opportunities’ are key areas whose growing importance cannot be neglected. As part of JobStreet.com’s continuous commitment to enhance jobseekers’ career journey, JobStreet.com is hosting the Malaysia Career and Training Fair 2018 (MCTF’18). In collaboration with AIC Exhibitions, Malaysia’s No.1 career fair is a platform for jobseekers to explore career opportunities in one location and make important and valuable career decisions. Be a part of this event and meet Malaysia’s top employers under one roof on 10 to 11 February 2018, from 10.00am to 7.00pm, at MidValley Exhibition Centre. Admission is free. (Media Release)

Travelling Trends: A Sign of Good Economy
The preferences of Malaysians travelling abroad have grown tremendously over the last few years to include hunting the Northern Lights in Ireland. Solo travelling has also increased as the fear of travelling abroad has dimmed and travel agents are not quite needed when everyone has smartphones equipped with Internet. According to a report by Mastercard, an estimated 11.9 million international outbound travel trips from Malaysia were recorded in 2016 and the number is forecast to grow by an average of 3.5 per cent annually to 14.2 million trips by 2021. Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) President, Datuk Tan Kok Liang, said that not only outbound travelling has grown over the years but domestic tourism has also sprouted steadily over the past few years. (Bernama)

Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Remains Top Premium Brand in Malaysia with Record Breaking performance in 2017
Mercedes-Benz Malaysia remains the leading premium brand in Malaysia with a new sales record of 12,045 vehicles sold, translating to a market share of 2.3% in the premium automotive market. “Moving into 2018, we are confident of the growth potential in the Malaysian automotive market and will continue to invest substantially in developing key areas including talent, technology, production and service,” said Mercedes-Benz Malaysia President and CEO, Dr Claus Weidner. (Media Release)

Incorrect to Claim 50,000 Workers Will Be Retrenched – MITI
The Ministry of International Trade and Industry said claims that 50,000 workers would be retrenched this year primarily due to the rising cost of doing business is incorrect. The Minister, Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said changes in technology and industrial structure which resulted in workers’ displacement were features of the knowledge-driven economy, even in good times, and this was also true for Malaysia as the country transitions from labour-intensive to knowledge-driven economy. “While there will be retrenchment, in our view most of those retrenched workers will be reemployed by new and expanding businesses and the total number of retrenchments this year may not be as high as claimed,” he said in a statement, following discussions on the cost of doing business and employment opportunities issues at the Cabinet Meeting and Economic Council Meeting last week, followed by a dialogue session with the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) and 21 of its members on Tuesday. FMM President, Datuk Soh Thian Lai, said Malaysia’s sustainable economic growth — 5.9 per cent in the first nine months of 2017 and forecast of around 5.0 to 5.5 per cent in 2018, would have a positive impact on employment opportunities, including in new areas such as aerospace and digital economy. “A total of 2.26 million jobs have been created under the Economic Transformation Programme so far, while a survey undertaken by SME Corporation in the third quarter of 2017 found that 40 per cent of the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) interviewed are expecting their businesses to improve in the near term.” Datuk Seri Mustapa. “Our current unemployment rate of around 3.3 per cent is the lowest in the region and is expected to remain stable. We believe that the implementation of sound macroeconomic policies, Budget 2018 proposals and the 11th Malaysia Plan, as well as strong exports and continued strong investment flows will generate more jobs in the country. (MITI)

Germany passport tops list of ‘most powerful’ globally in 2018 Henley Index
Singapore’s passport ranks second in the 2018 Henley Passport Index, its highest ranking on the index in the last 10 years, according to residence and citizenship advisory firm Henley & Partners. Germany took the top spot for the fifth year running. The index is based on how many countries various passport holders can travel to without a visa. Singapore passport holders can travel to 176 countries without a visa, up from 173 countries, according to Henley’s 2016 Visa Restrictions Index. German passport holders have visa-free access to 177 countries, up from last year’s 176. Third place on the list is shared among Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, Japan, Norway, Sweden and the UK. Passport holders from these countries enjoy visa-free travel to 175 countries. Within Southeast Asia, the rankings have “remained stable”, with Malaysia ranking second in the region, and 12th on the global scale as their passport holders can travel without visas to 166 countries. Indonesia moved up seven places to rank 72nd globally. (CNA)

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