Govt continues focus on STEM training to boost foreign investments — PM - MIDA | Malaysian Investment Development Authority
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Govt continues focus on STEM training to boost foreign investments — PM

Govt continues focus on STEM training to boost foreign investments — PM

26 Mar 2024

The government will continue to focus on training in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), especially at the highest levels, to boost foreign investments in the country.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said Malaysia’s current weakness lies in training in mathematics, science, engineering, artificial intelligence (AI), and Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) at the highest level.

“We can do it if we give full focus and additional allocation (to training in the STEM field),” he said during the Minister’s Question Time in the Dewan Rakyat today.

Anwar was responding to Tebrau MP Jimmy Puah, who asked about the government’s efforts to ensure the RM329.5 billion investment momentum obtained last year continues to increase in the years to come.

Anwar, who is also the Finance Minister, admitted the interest of students in STEM is also declining, which is a matter of great concern.

The Education Ministry and other educational groups have taken various steps to urge parents to encourage their children to engage in STEM education at the secondary level.

“This is being worked on more seriously,” said the Prime Minister.

He added that in all his meetings with foreign companies intent on investing in Malaysia, the emphasis was placed on the importance of these companies having their centre of excellence here in Malaysia to provide skills training to professionals and local students.

“There must be training here because we currently lack engineers. Although good and well-received, the engineers we produced are still considered to be lacking the highest level of skills or efficiency.

“So there is a gap about the required niche. Therefore, this focus on TVET and engineering needs to be given attention…I agree that if Malaysia does not do something immediately, we will be on the losing end.

“This is because the focus now is no longer on the low-end industry but on the high-end industry, which requires higher efficiency than what is available now,” Anwar said.

In that regard, he has asked local universities, starting with Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), to establish an AI Faculty which should coordinate their activities with all universities that conduct AI to meet some of the needs in the field.

Source: Bernama