• TalentCorp Continues to Upskill Malaysians
  • Bank Negara Malaysia Acquires Land for Financial Education Hub
  • China revises 2016 GDP slightly lower, keeps 6.7 pct growth unchanged
  • North Korea and South Korea to meet 9 January
  • Patients to get more safeguards under new healthcare legislation in Singapore

TalentCorp Continues to Upskill Malaysians
Talent Corporation Malaysia Bhd (TalentCorp) will continue its effort to upskill Malaysians and help them to become more agile in line with the changing work landscape. In a statement today, Chief Executive Officer Shareen Shariza Abdul Ghani said it was crucial to take into account that more than half of the current jobs in Malaysia were at risk of being automated. “With the National Transformation 2050 plan in place, and our aim for Malaysia to be among the top 20 countries in the world, we need to have a highly skilled human capital. “As industries experience the effects of digital disruptions, jobs are becoming increasingly non-linear, and we need to ensure that we are well prepared and able to adapt to the new roles, opportunities and demands of this future workforce,” she said, adding that organisations need to rethink their business models and look at ways to retain and develop their employees. It is also important to look into the fact that we are losing half of our workforce when women go on career breaks due to family commitments and this affects the nation’s economic growth. (Bernama)

Bank Negara Malaysia Acquires Land for Financial Education Hub
Bank Negara Malaysia has acquired a piece of land with a total area of 55.79 acres from the Government of Malaysia. The land will be utilised for the relocation of the Global Islamic Finance University (INCEIF) and the International Shari’ah Research Academy for Islamic Finance (ISRA). The land will also be used for future development of education and training facilities that will focus on enhancing the technical capabilities of the talents in the financial services industry. The entire combined area will be designated and integrated as a world-class Education Hub for Financial Services. The Hub is envisioned to be a focal point for international learning and research that will nurture a sustainable pool of local talents to support the development of the domestic financial industry. (BNM)

China revises 2016 GDP slightly lower, keeps 6.7 pct growth unchanged
China has slightly trimmed its 2016 gross domestic product figure after scaling back an initial estimate of the services sector. But Beijing kept the annual GDP growth rate unchanged at 6.7 per cent, the statistics. The National Bureau of Statistics revised the final 2016 GDP to 74.36 trillion yuan, down 54.2 billion yuan from the preliminary number. Final data from the bureau shows the services sector grew 7.7 per cent in 2016 to 38.3 trillion yuan. The sector, which accounts for half of China’s GDP, expanded 7.8 per cent in the bureau’s initial estimate to 38.4 trillion yuan. The revisions were mainly due to small cuts in the bureau’s estimates for the size of the financial and tech sectors, which grew 4.5 per cent and 18.1 per cent in the final numbers, respectively, down from 5.7 per cent and 22.2 per cent in the earlier data release. China’s 2016 GDP grew at its slowest pace in more than a quarter of a century as the government pushed through painful structural reforms in the economy. GDP is expected to have expanded 6.8 per cent in 2017, exceeding the government’s target of around 6.5 per cent. But economists said growth will likely slow to 6.4 per cent this year.

North Korea and South Korea to meet 9 January
North and South Korea will hold official talks on 9 January in Panmunjom. This was confirmed by South Korea’s Unification Ministry after Pyongyang sent a statement accepting Seoul’s offer for talks next week. The Ministry’s spokesman, Baik Tae-hyun said the agenda will include the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics as well as other issues of mutual interest. The tentative rapprochement comes after North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un warned in his New Year speech that he had a nuclear button on his desk, but at the same time offered Seoul an olive branch, saying Pyongyang could send a team to next month’s Winter Olympics in the South. Seoul responded with an offer of talks between the two, and earlier this week the hotline between them was restored after being suspended for almost two years. Late Thursday, South Korean president Moon Jae-In and his US counterpart Donald Trump agreed to delay joint military drills until after the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang next month. (Agencies)

Patients to get more safeguards under new healthcare legislation in Singapore
Patients who consult doctors through video calls, opt for assisted reproduction like in-vitro fertilisation or live in hospices and nursing homes will soon be better protected, under new healthcare legislation in Singapore. Patients using these services are among those who will be newly covered by the Healthcare Services Bill, which will provide regulatory standards for providers. The Bill is expected to be enacted later this year. It will prescribe regulatory standards for a variety of services, including medical transport, radiation oncology and tissue banking. The Bill will facilitate the development and licensing of services such as tele-medicine, genetics screening and new cell tissue and genetic therapy services, said MOH’s director of health regulation group Adjunct Associate Professor Raymond Chua at a media briefing on Thursday. Traditional, complementary and alternative medicine, and allied health and non-physician healthcare will also be governed by the Bill, although these services do not need to be licensed yet, MOH said. (CNA)