ALMOST nine out of 10 Malaysian youth say the average wage is low, a view that is most prevalent among Indian youth, a recent survey by the Merdeka Centre for Opinion Research finds.
Low wages were the concern of 98% of Indian, 85% Malay, and 84% Chinese youth.
The belief was similarly held by a high number of voters (85%) and non-voters (89%).
About seven out of 10 Indian (74%) and Malay (70%) youth found difficulty entering the job market. This was less so for Chinese youth. (45%).
Of the total respondents, (73%) felt they were employed in the field of their choice. The feeling was higher among urban youth (75%) compared with rural youth (68%) .
However, Malay youth felt most vulnerable in job security, with less than half (45%) saying they felt secure in their current employment. Indians felt the most secure at 76%, followed by Chinese (59%)
Indians felt the most financially improved in the last 12 months with 40% agreeing there was some growth in their household income in the past year. Only 28% Malays felt the same and only 10% Chinese said their income was better now than a year ago.
All three racial groups had one common concern – worrying about personal finances.
Malays (77%), Chinese (71%) and Indians (68%) said they worried about their finances constantly. The worry was slightly higher among rural youth (78%) compared with their urban counterparts (73%).
The survey was held in 165 constituencies in 12 states in the peninsula from August 3 to 8.
The 604 respondents were made up of 68% Malays, 23% Chinese and 9% Indians.
Of those in the 21-30 age bracket, 60% worked in the private sector; 15% were self-employed; 11% were students or unemployed; 8% worked in the public sector or with government linked corporations; and 6% were housewives.
Of those surveyed, 32% earned a monthly income of less than RM2,000; 37% earned RM2,001-RM3,999; 14% earned RM4,000-RM6,999; 8% earned above RM7,000; and 9% had no income. – September 19, 2017.
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT