KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 20 — The average salary in Malaysia is expected to increase by 5.1 per cent in 2024, according to Mercer’s Total Remuneration Survey 2023 released today.
The growth, however, was slightly lower below the Asia average of 5.2 per cent, reflecting the varying pay progression between emerging and developed economies in the region.
The survey showed that India, Vietnam, and Indonesia are set to report the highest projected median salary increments in 2024 at 9.3 per cent, 7.0 per cent and 6.5 per cent, respectively.
Japan, Taiwan, and Hong Kong are expected to register the lowest at 2.6 per cent, 3.8 per cent and 3.9 per cent, respectively.
Other countries included in the survey are the Philippines at 5.7 per cent, China at 5.2 per cent, Thailand at 4.7 per cent, South Korea at 4.4 per cent and Singapore at 4.2 per cent.
Mercer Malaysia market leader Koay Gim Soon said that despite the moderate economic growth experienced in 2023 compared to the previous year, Malaysia’s labour market continues to show a positive outlook, reflected in the uptrend in salaries.
“The country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and individual sectors have largely rebounded to pre-pandemic levels, and multiple economic indicators point towards further growth in the coming year.
“In fact, over half of the survey participants have expressed their intention to increase payroll budgets for both 2023 and 2024, which is an encouraging sign for companies and employees alike,” he said in a statement.
The survey, conducted between April and June this year, collected data from 668 multinational corporations (MNCs) across 15 industries in Malaysia.
Overall, Malaysia’s median salary increases show a consistent uptrend, rising from 4.8 per cent in 2022 to 5.0 per cent in 2023.
The energy and high-tech industries are leading salary increases in Malaysia in 2023, with median salary growth of 6.5 per cent and 6.1 per cent, respectively, followed by consumer goods and manufacturing at 5.0 per cent.
However, the life sciences industry, which recorded the highest salary increase in 2022 at 7.7 per cent, is experiencing a decrease to 4.3 per cent in 2023, while the transportation equipment sector has seen the lowest increase at 3.6 per cent for 2023.
“In 2022, major players within the energy industry earned record profits and have since reinvested a portion of their income growth into improving their compensation strategies to attract and retain top talent.
“As for the high-tech industry, its salary increase is largely driven by the surge in demand for digital and technology skills like Big Data and artificial intelligence in Malaysia,” Koay said.
As for bonus payouts across industries in 2023, the survey revealed consistent median values with an average multiple of 2.2 times the monthly base salary.
The shared service & outsourcing sector maintained the highest bonus projection at 2.4 months, but in contrast, the retail industry is expected to see a notable decrease from 2.5 months in 2022 to 1.5 months in 2023.
This adjustment reflects a return to pre-pandemic bonus levels after retail companies provided higher-than-normal bonuses in 2022 due to post-pandemic recovery.
On the other hand, the high-tech sector is reporting a significant increase in bonus projections, rising to 2.2 months in 2023 from 1.8 months in 2022. — Bernama