Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said on 28 November 2018 that the nation aims to recognise the potentials and prospects for green industries and jobs in ASEAN countries, during its time as chair of the ASEAN labour sector, Bernama reported.
This was announced in Dr Mahathir’s speech, which was read out by Human Resource Minister M. Kulasegaran at the 25th ASEAN Labour Ministers Meeting held in Kuala Lumpur.
According to Bernama, Dr Mahathir also said Malaysia hopes to develop corresponding regional policies regarding green industries during the three-year period from 2018 to 2020.
As read by Kulasegaran, Dr Mahathir said: “Let us embark on our journey immediately. Malaysia will do its best to take the labour sector forward by incorporating green jobs and skills into the aegis of our chairmanship.”
ASEAN also looks forward to working with China, Japan and South Korea in advancing meaningfully for the future of green jobs and skills in the region.
In line with this, Dr Mahathir is confident that ASEAN’s labour sector will witness significant outcomes in the greening of industries, jobs and skills.
In fact, he also noted that employment across ASEAN’s green economy grew by 3.2% over the past two years, compared to the overall economic growth of 5% to 6%. This meant that almost 1.4 million new green jobs had been created, according to the DBS’ Annual Report 2017 on Green Job Opportunities in ASEAN, Bernama reported.
Dr Mahathir said: “In the same vein, we have seen strong growth, particularly in the renewable energy sector such as wind and solar power, as well as the production of equipment and installations for heating and energy saving that subsequently create jobs in the region.
“Looking forward, as technology evolves, we can expect an increase in the creation of new green jobs, and stronger growth in current occupations and greening industries.”
Further, Malaysia’s Government aims to boost the growth of the green technology sector, targetting a revenue of RM180 billion and creating more than 200,000 green jobs by 2030. While Dr Mahathir is optimistic about this, he also stressed the importance of the Government as well as workers’ and employers’ organisations starting to promote green jobs and skills from now.