Bonus? Salary increase? Fat chance, says MEF

Employees should forget about overtime, bonus and salary increases for now as the economy is expected to only recover at the tail-end of 2021 or early 2022.

This is the advice given by Malaysian Employers Federation executive director Datuk Shamsuddin Bardan to Malaysian employees.

Pointing out that the government is being overly optimistic of an early recovery from Covid-19, Shamsuddin said in reality, businesses will not be able to pick up by year-end.

Acknowledging that many Malaysians have taken a pay cut or been retrenched in the last three months, Shamsuddin said employers have been forced to conserve money to have funds in reserve.

“It is harder in the Malaysian context as many workers depend on overtime to survive,” he said.

“But this has been reduced and employees who are expecting to receive bonuses in December or for Chinese New Year should forget about the windfall this year and maybe next year too.”

The Malaysia Trades Union Congress said last Saturday that official estimates showed 4.9 per cent or 773,200 people were out of work in June, while the Statistics Department reported that private sector jobs decreased by 200,000, shrinking from 8.6 million to 8.4 million in the second quarter of 2020.

Shamsuddin said the challenge right now is to keep companies running without losing staff.

“We need to plan how to avert this sort of disaster. I feel many more jobs will be lost in the next year or so.”

Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz had on Friday said Malaysia recorded an improvement in its GDP with every passing month, with the negative growth rates from April (-28.6 per cent) having reduced significantly in June (-3.2 per cent) after the Recovery Movement Control Order was introduced.

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Judicial Commissioner Leonard David Shim said this after hearing submissions in the application by 33 assemblymen who are challenging the dissolution on July 30.

Meanwhile, Deputy Election Commission chairman Azmi Sharom announced that the Sabah election will take place on Sept 26. Nominations will take place on Sept 12 while early voting will be on Sept 22.


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The former Federal Land Development Authority (Felda) chairman said Zahid admitted this when they met in a funeral after the latter was released.

Isa and Zahid were remanded at the same time over MACC’s probe into Felda Investment Corporation Sdn Bhd’s purchase of the Merdeka Palace & Suites Hotel in Kuching, Sarawak, but were held at different MACC buildings.