KUALA LUMPUR, July 29 ― The government has determined that foreign workers will be limited to work in only three sectors to ensure that Malaysians will be employed after the economy was badly hit by the Covid-19 pandemic and the movement control order (MCO) that followed.

Deputy Human Resource Minister Awang Solahudin told the Dewan Rakyat today that foreign workers can only be employed in the construction sector, agricultural sector and the plantation sector.

“We have made a decision to allow foreign workers for only three sectors. These sectors are ― construction, agriculture and plantations. Only these sectors are allowed to employ foreign workers.

“The other sectors we want to fill up with local workers. This will be part of our guideline to decrease foreign worker intake,” said Awang.


Currently, foreign workers are allowed in a gamut of sectors ranging from the three mentioned above down to manufacturing and also services sectors.

They are employed for jobs that many locals refuse to work in due to its dirty, dangerous and difficult (3D) nature coupled with low wages found in those sectors.

Many local workers feel that the local wages for the 3D jobs are not worth their time or effort but would accept those same jobs in Singapore, partially due to the higher wages as well as the island nation’s stronger currency when compared to the Malaysian ringgit.