Some employees in Malaysia still working longer than required hours

Complaints have been filed about employers violating the 45-hour workweek requirement to the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC).
By: | January 11, 2023

Following the implementation of the amendments to Malaysia’s Employment Act last week, the MTUC has received complaints from employees and unions concerning employers’ failure to comply with the amended legislation.

Among these, said Kamarul Baharin Mansor, Secretary-General of MTUC, is employers not abiding with the 45-hour workweek as stipulated in the legislation. “Employers are trying to utilise other methods to ensure that employees spend at least 48 hours each week at the office by not paying them for their break hours,” he said.

This change in employees’ terms of employment without consent has caused anger among employees because it means they are still working longer hours that is legally required.

Kamarul emphasised, “The purpose of reducing working hours is to help employees achieve work-life balance. Employees should be allowed to spend time with their families with shorter working hours, but regrettably, employers utilise different methods to make sure employees remain in the company for 48 hours.”

READ: Amendments to Malaysia’s Employment Act kick in

He urged the Ministry of Human Resources to ensure that all organisations are in compliance with the Act’s amendments and to penalise employers who choose to ignore them, reported New Straits Times.

Besides the number of working hours being reduced from 48 to 45, the Employment Act now introduces flexible working arrangements and increases overtime payments for employees earning up to RM4,000 (US$908) monthly.