Crucial for Sarawak to have highly-skilled workforce to achieve developed status

A group photo of Prof Al-Khalid (front row, 2nd right) flanked by Abdul Hadi on his right at SEDC’s session on ‘Preparing Skilled Workforce for Digital Economy Transformation Engagement and Preparedness’ at SEDC headquarters on Nov 22, 2022.

KUCHING, Nov 23: It is now crucial for Sarawak to have a sufficient pool of competent, certified practitioners and professionals in its workforce as the State aspires to achieve developed Status by 2030, says Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA) deputy chief scientist Professor Ir Ts Dr Al-Khalid Othman.

He added that with billions of ringgit worth of projects to be implemented by Sarawak Economic Development Corporation (SEDC) in oil and gas, petro-chemical industry, transport and renewable energy, the State’s GLC must be at the forefront to have a pool of highly skilled workforce.

“As Sarawak aspired to become an industrialised State by 2030. It needs a pool of competent and highly skilled workforce.

“In this regard, SEDC which has been entrusted to develop our oil and gas, chemical industry, transport and renewable energy, must be at then forefront to improve its competency and professionalism of its workforce.

“As such, SEDC must be ready to have a pool of professional certified human resource capabable to embark on digital transformation as there are many mega projects such as Petros, petro-chemical, Sarawak Metro and hydrogen economy.

“And it is essential for our human resource from twenty-four fields of science and technology throughout Sarawak to improve the competency and professionalism in SEDC workforce as part of the PCDS 2030 initiatives,” said Prof Al-Khalid in a statement today.

He highlighted this at SEDC’s session on ‘Preparing Skilled Workforce for Digital Economy Transformation Engagement and Preparedness’ at SEDC headquarters here yesterday (Nov 22).

He added that the need for skilled workforce in various technical fields was crucial in order to support Sarawak’s ambition to have some 10,000 professional certified technologists by 2025.

“As we know, there is a need for a highly skilled workforce in Sarawak, especially related to our fast and vast digital economy transformation, which is highly connected to our Post-Covid-19 Development Strategy (PCDS 2030) initiatives initiated by Premier of Sarawak,” he explained.

Prof Al-Khalid also pointed out the need for Sarawak’s labour force to be intensified, especially in new development sectors such as hydrogen, clean energy, oil and gas, manufacturing and smart mobility initiatives.

He also suggested the various categories and types of programmes and courses required for digital skills with value creation within SEDC businesses.

SEDC general manager Datu Abdul Hadi Abdul Kadir stressed the need of SEDC’s workforce to be equipped with technological knowledge and expertise through upskilling, reskilling and retooling programmes.

He also highlighted strategies for digital economy manpower requirement, and how the recognitions and professional certifications of Sarawak’s workforce is needed to boost and optimise its resources.

Meanwhile, Association of Professional Technicians and Technologists (APTT) Sarawak chairman Ir Ts Ahmad Zawawi highlighted the needs for local processionals to get recognised by the Malaysia Board of Technologists (MBOT) and how the association would assist to increase the certified technologists and technicians in the State.

He revealed that currently, Sarawak has 2,891 professionals registered with MBOT, which include 615 professional technologists, 416 qualified technicians, 114 certified technicians and 1,746 graduate technologists. — DayakDaily