World Bank urges Malaysia to increase female labour participation
Malaysia needs to invest in human capital, increase its female labour force participation rate and implement policy changes that boosts the country’s economic growth, said the World Bank in a report.
The development model that worked in the past for Malaysia is no longer enough for it to navigate to the next stage of its development, it added. Instead, a different set of policies will be needed to improve the quality, sustainability and inclusiveness of economic growth in the future.
Malaysia’s female workforce participation rate currently stands below the 25th percentile of high-income nations. To allow more women to work, Malaysia should reduce or remove barriers to economic opportunities through legal reforms, address attitudes that cause disparities, and introduce more economic and societal support for parents, said the World Bank.
It also added that the country can invest in human capital through education, the quantity and quality of which would provide the biggest boost to economic growth in the long run.
Should Malaysia maintain its current level of educational quality and health – which is at the 25th percentile of high-income countries – human capital accumulation will not contribute much to economic growth, the World Bank warned.
To ensure that the country does not trail behind other high-income nations, it should find ways to boost competitiveness, create high-quality jobs, ensure greater inclusion and strengthen its capacity to transition to a high-income and developed nation status, the World Bank highlighted.