Penang aims to attract 150,000 talents in next five years to sustain growth
05 Apr 2023
Penang aims to attract at least 150,000 talents in the next five years to sustain its economic and industrial growth, said Datuk Seri Lee Kah Choon, a special investment adviser to the state’s chief minister.
Lee said that multi-pronged strategies need to be initiated urgently involving all stakeholders, such as industry players, institutions of higher learning and government agencies, to address the talent pool issue.
“A tech-driven educational system beginning from the primary level has to be implemented immediately,” he said in a statement on Wednesday (April 5).
Lee said that attracting international talents with certain skill sets such as software engineering and implementing more holistic policies for retaining engineering talents would be important to create a healthy and sustainable talent pipeline.
“To attract more knowledge workers to the state, Penang has undertaken a few initiatives such as the Penang Internship Subsidy Programme to entice knowledge workers from neighbouring states,” he said.
Moreover, he said that the state’s ability to provide a conducive work, live and play environment for outstation talents would be key to the success of this initiative.
Meanwhile, Lee said that Asia had emerged as the fastest-growing market for the medical technology industry, prompting tier-one players to establish manufacturing sites in the region.
With a five-year compound annual growth rate of 6.8%, the Asian market is estimated to reach US$147 billion (RM646.58 billion) in 2027, he said.
He noted that Penang had the highest concentration of medical technology companies in Southeast Asia, and the state is proud to be home to six of the global top 30 medical device companies by sales.
In line with the changing global business models, Lee said that the state had also witnessed a surge in the number of research and development activities.
“Similarly, we are seeing [more] design and development centres being set up in Penang to leverage local talents,” he added.
Lee said that Penang is well known for its electrical and electronics (E&E) sector both nationally and internationally, whereby about 38% of Malaysia’s total exports are made up of E&E products, and about 60% of which are from the state.