SHAH ALAM, July 23 (Bernama) — The Apprenticeship Scheme introduced by the government to increase the supply of skilled workers in the country, has significantly reduced unemployment rate among youths, says Human Resources Minister, Datuk Seri Richard Riot.
He said the scheme, introduced in 1996 through the ministry’s Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF) was a great success as about 80 per cent of youths who had undertaken the training programme are currently employed and earning an income of at least RM1,200 a month.
“This is one of the ways where the Human Resources Ministry is trying to help (school) dropouts to earn a living. Through this scheme, we hope to further reduce the unemployment rate in the country which currently stands at 2.9 per cent,” he told reporters after presenting 113 apprentices with Malaysian Skills Certificate (SKM) under the Apprenticeship Scheme, here today.
The Scheme, which targets Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) and Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) leavers and school dropouts is jointly determined by the Perbadanan Sumber Manusia Berhad and the industry concerned.
The training programmes under the scheme which is fully funded by HRDF, consists a combination of theoretical and practical skill-based courses like Mechatronics and Plastics Injection Moulding at approved training centers.
Riot said the trainees under the scheme are paid an allowance of RM500 per month by participating sponsors if their attendance is above 80 per cent.
He said the scheme also enables employers registered with HRDF to be actively involved in contributing towards achieving the national agenda of a 35 per cent skilled workforce by 2020.
On another note, Riot said 14 participants from Malaysia will be taking part in the World Skills Competition to be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil starting next month.