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The Active Population in Figures

Labour Force 15,523,12615,780,71615,904,215

Source: International Labour Organization, ILOSTAT database

Total activity rate 68.00%68.54%68.64%
Men activity rate 80.34%80.85%80.94%
Women activity rate 54.81%55.39%55.49%

Source: International Labour Organization, ILOSTAT database

Employed Persons, by Occupation (% of Total Labour Force) 2015
Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles 16.8%
Manufacturing 16.5%
Agriculture, forestry and fishing 12.5%
Construction 9.3%
Accommodation and food service activities 8.2%
Education 6.4%
Public administration and defence; compulsory social security 5.3%
Administrative and support service activities 4.5%
Transportation and storage 4.4%
Human health and social work activities 4.1%
Professional, scientific and technical activities 2.6%
Financial and insurance activities 2.5%
Information and communication 1.5%
Mining and quarrying 0.7%
Arts, entertainment and recreation 0.6%
Water supply; sewerage, waste management and remediation activities 0.5%
Real estate activities 0.5%
Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply 0.4%
For Further Statistics
ILO, Laborsta Malaysia
For Further Information About the Labour Market
International Labour Organisation

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Working Conditions

Legal Weekly Duration
48 hours a week.
Retirement Age
There is no legal age for retirement in the private sector even if the EPF (Employment Provident Fund) considers people are eligible from 55 for men and 50 for women.
Working Contracts
Called "Contract of Service" or "Contract of Employment", the contract is deemed to exist as soon as the employee starts to work. There are fixed-term contracts and open-ended contracts.
Labour Laws
Consult Doing Business Website, to obtain a summary of the labor regulations that apply to local entreprises.

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Cost of Labour

Minimum Wage
According to the government data, the minimum wage was MYR 1,2000 per month in 2020.
Average Wage
Average montly salary for employees: MYR 3,224; median montly salary: MYR 2,441(source: Department of Statistics Malaysia, 2019).
Social Contributions
Social Security Contributions Paid By Employers: Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF)

  • below 60 years of age: 12% for income up to MYR 5,000, 13% for income equal or above MYR 5,000
  • age 60 and above: 4%

Employment Injury Insurance Scheme (EIIS) and Invalidity Pension Scheme (IPS): based on the employee’s monthly wages, up to a maximum of MYR 69.05 for the employer.
Social Security Contributions Paid By Employees: 11% or 5.5% (depending on the age) for retirement pension and 0.50% for insurance and workplace accident (capped at MYR 4 000 per month).

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Social Partners

Social Dialogue and Involvement of Social Partners
There are two national organisations: the Malaysian Trade Union Corporation (MTUC) and the Congress of Unions of Employees in the Public and Civil Service (CUEPACS).
National Union of Journalists Malaysia
Unionisation Rate
9.5% of workers are unionized.
Labour Regulation Bodies
Ministry of Human Resources

Find out more about Operating a Business in Malaysia on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

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Actualitzacions: May 2022

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