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The article explore the relationship between migrant worker and poverty rate in Malaysia. Publication: 4th International Malaysian Studies Conference; 3-5 August 2004, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi. Author: Norinah Mohd Ali.

This article explores the implementation of Gahan's (1998) model on union strategy which consists of union aims, union methods, union tactics, and level of decision-making. Empirical data are provided from a qualitative analysis in the Indonesian and Malaysian postal industries. Research findings reveal that consultancy unionism is playing important roles in explaining the relationships among unions, workers, and employers in Malaysia, while partnership unionism best describing the union in Indonesia. The pattern of consultancy unionism strategy emphasise more on servicing and limited partnership with employers. The stronger organising solidarity from their members may improve their partnership in the interest of union survival facing tough competition in the postal business.

By Jeffrey Henderson and Richard Phillips.  Published on Economy and Society Volume 36 Number 1 February 2007: 78-102. Taylor & Francis Group.

Abstract: This paper examines the relation of particular forms of social and labour market policy to economic development. Taking the history of Malaysian industrialization as its empirical case, the paper assesses the unintended consequences of redistribution policy, on the one hand, and migration policy, on the other, for the limited upgrading of the country’s electronics industry. It argues that, while the former has been central to social harmony in Malaysia’s multi-racial society, it has contributed to the underdevelopment of small and medium-sized firms capable of linking with the TNCs on the basis of knowledge-intensive and higher value-added operations. Migration policy, on the other hand, has allowed manufacturers to have continued access to supplies of low-cost, lower-skilled labour that have released the pressures that would otherwise have been there for technological and skill upgrading in the electronics industry. Only in Penang, where regional state institutions have intervened to encourage SME upgrading, has the national picture been moderated.

Malaysia’s industrialization project emerged at time when export competition in manufactured commodities was less intense than it is now. Largely as a result of federal government priorities and for other reasons explored in the paper, advantage was not taken of this ‘window of opportunity’. As a consequence, the country’s industrialization project - exemplified by its electronics industry - is now ‘stalling’ in the sense that it remains locked into low- to medium-technology operations. With the rise of China as a manufacturing exporter, this is a dangerous situation for a country’s principal industry to be in.

Migrant workers will, no doubt, continue to feature strongly in the Malaysian economy for some time. In this respect, Malaysia needs a clear and comprehensive long-term foreign labour policy, setting out the short-medium- and long-term targets and strategies that would be consistent with its restructuring goals of shifting towards high tech and skill industries. And more importantly, regulations need to be strictly enforced. With a clear long-term road map and advance warning, labour intensive firms could then plan ahead and adjust, to remain competitive.  Publication: MIERScan, 14 March 2005. Author: Chew, Kevin.
This article discusses the presence of sweat labor and the need to introduce minimum-wage legislation in Malaysia. Basic and gross hourly wage rates by legal status and industry group; Efficiency in the use of nonlabor inputs; Degree of capital intensity and foreign ownership among incorporated establishments; Increase in wage rates in the unincorporated establishments; Relationship between wage rates and capital intensity.
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