Malaysia to lift limit on hiring of foreign labor

A worker collects palm oil fruits at a plantation, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Klang, Malaysia, on June 15, 2020. (REUTERS/Lim Huey Teng)
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Updated 14 August 2020

Malaysia to lift limit on hiring of foreign labor

  • Malaysia hosts about 2.1 million documented foreign workers

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has decided to lift an earlier limit on the hiring of foreign workers meant to protect jobs for locals in most sectors, the Human Resources Ministry said late on Thursday.
Last month, the ministry said the hiring of foreign labor would be limited to the construction, agriculture and plantation sectors, a move to increase employment opportunities for locals affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
The ministry said more than 67,000 local workers and over 4,700 foreign workers had lost their jobs as of July.
“However, there were some employers who claim to still need a number of foreign workers and urged the government to withdraw the freeze on recruitment of new foreign workers,” Minister Saravanan Murugan said in the statement.
Saravanan urged employers to prioritize filling job vacancies with local workers before considering re-employing foreign workers who are still in Malaysia with a valid work permit.

The foreign workers, if rehired, must work in the same sectors they were previously employed in.
Malaysia hosts about 2.1 million documented foreign workers, according to government estimates.


AstraZeneca still waiting for FDA decision to resume US trial

Updated 5 min 26 sec ago

AstraZeneca still waiting for FDA decision to resume US trial

FRANKFURT: AstraZeneca is still waiting for the go-ahead from the US drug regulator to restart the clinical trial of its potential COVID-19 vaccine in the United States, Chief Executive Pascal Soriot said on Thursday.
“We are the sponsor of the US study. We then provided all this information to the FDA (US Federal Drug Administration) and we are waiting to hear their decision,” Soriot told a virtual World Economic Forum discussion.
The US trial of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate, initially developed by the University of Oxford, remains on hold while regulators investigate an illness in one of the participants, even after a British study and other programs outside of the United States have resumed.
US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said on Wednesday the continued suspension showed the FDA took vaccine safety seriously.
A document posted online by Oxford university last week stated the illness in a British participant that triggered the pause on Sept. 6 may not have been associated with the vaccine.