Institute of Labour Market Information and Analysis (ILMIA)
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Soalan Lazim

What is the function of ILMIA?

ILMIA serves as an information centre for labour data and analysis for the Malaysian labour market. At ILMIA, we are responsible for ensuring that data is accurate and up to date as well as facilitating data sharing with users. ILMIA is also the agency responsible for conducting research / studies on the labour market in Malaysia. The results of these studies will be published and used as a guide for policy-making relating to national labour.

What kind of data can be obtained from ILMIA?

Among the data that are available are data on key labour market indicators, supply and demand by economic sectors and NKEAs, average wage according to sectors, and skills by occupation.

Who uses ILMIA Portal?

ILMIA aims to inform users that are government, independent researchers, self-employed and employers, employees, students and public. The ILMIA portal can be used by all categories of user and strives to use language that is simple, non-technical and easily understood by all.

From where does ILMIA source the data that it analyses?

Data sources are obtained principally from several government agencies such as the Department of Statistics, Ministry of Education, Bank Negara Malaysia, the Economic Planning Unit, Ministry of Human Resources and others, including the private sector if made available.

What is the difference between the terms 'Labour Force' and 'Workforce'?

The term 'labour force' refers to all people in Malaysia aged between 15 and 64 years who are at work or unemployed. The 'Workforce' is another category which includes those who do any work for pay, profit or family gain (whether as employer, employee, self-employed or unpaid family worker).

What is the definition of 'Unemployment' and the 'Unemployment Rate'?

  • 'Unemployment' means the population aged between 15 and 64 years in the labour force category who are willing to, and actively looking for, work.
  • 'Unemployment rate' means the number of unemployed compared to the total labour force expressed as a percentage.

What is meant by 'Outside The Labour Force' and how does it differ from unemployment?

'Outside the labour force' refers to those who are not classified as employed or unemployed, such as housewives, students, retirees and those not interested in finding employment. Unemployed, on the other hand, means those who have yet to get a job but are willing to, and actively seeking, work.

Is the unemployment rate in Malaysia better than in other countries?

Overall, the unemployment rate in Malaysia is on average 3.4% (2016). This rate is lower than that in Australia (5.8%) and Brazil (5.6%). Malaysia's unemployment rate is basically stable and some would consider that full employment in the economy has been achieved. Although, in principle, a lower unemployment rate indicates the economy is steady, the unemployment rate will not reduce to zero as there will always be unemployment due to frictions or timing lags, as a result of, for example, employees moving to new jobs or changes in technology.

How can i get hold of books published by ILMIA?

Books and journals published by ILMIA are available online (softcopy) in the publications section. In addition, users can apply in writing or visit ILMIA's office to get printed copies.

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Quick Facts

  • GENERAL EXPLANATION FOR LABOUR MARKET INDICATORS
  • LABOUR FORCE FACT, 2016
  • EMPLOYMENT FACT, 2016
  • UNEMPLOYMENT FACT, 2016
  • GENERAL EXPLANATION FOR LABOUR MARKET INDICATORS

    Working Age Population

    The working age limit for a country is determined based on the age structure of the economically active population of the country. Working age for the analysis of Labour Force Survey in Malaysia refers to household members between the age of 15 to 64 years during the reference week, who are either in the labour force or outside the labour force.

    Labour Force

    Labour force refers to all persons within the 15-64 years age-group who are either employed or unemployed during the reference week. This indicator has details by gender, age group and state.

    Outside Labour Force

    All persons not classified as employed or unemployed are classified as outside labour force. This category consists of housewives, students (including those going for further studies), retired, disabled persons and those not interested in looking for a job.

    Employed

    All person who, at any time during the reference week worked at least one hour for pay, profit or family gain. They are also considered as employed if : Did not work during the reference week because of illness, injury, disability, bad weather, leave, labour dispute and social or religious reason but had a job, farm, enterprise or other family enterprise to return to. Temporary laid-off with pay and would definitely be called back to work. Employed less than 30 hours during the reference week because of the nature of their works or due to insufficient work and are able and willing to accept additional hours of work. This group is underemployed

    Unemployed

    The unemployed are classified into two groups that is the actively unemployed and inactively unemployed. The actively unemployed include all persons who did not work during the reference week but were available for work and were actively looking for work during the references week. Inactively unemployed persons include the following categories : Person who did not look for work because they believed no work was available or that they were not qualified. Person who would have looked for work if they had not been temporarily ill or had it not been for bad weather. Person who were waiting for result of job applications. Person who had looked for work prior to the reference week.
    • Working Age Population

      The working age limit for a country is determined based on the age structure of the economically active population of the country. Working age for the analysis of Labour Force Survey in Malaysia refers to household members between the age of 15 to 64 years during the reference week, who are either in the labour force or outside the labour force.
    • Labour Force

      Labour force refers to all persons within the 15-64 years age-group who are either employed or unemployed during the reference week. This indicator has details by gender, age group and state.
    • Outside Labour Force

      All persons not classified as employed or unemployed are classified as outside labour force. This category consists of housewives, students (including those going for further studies), retired, disabled persons and those not interested in looking for a job.
    • Employed

      All person who, at any time during the reference week worked at least one hour for pay, profit or family gain. They are also considered as employed if : Did not work during the reference week because of illness, injury, disability, bad weather, leave, labour dispute and social or religious reason but had a job, farm, enterprise or other family enterprise to return to. Temporary laid-off with pay and would definitely be called back to work. Employed less than 30 hours during the reference week because of the nature of their works or due to insufficient work and are able and willing to accept additional hours of work. This group is underemployed
    • Unemployed

      The unemployed are classified into two groups that is the actively unemployed and inactively unemployed. The actively unemployed include all persons who did not work during the reference week but were available for work and were actively looking for work during the references week. Inactively unemployed persons include the following categories : Person who did not look for work because they believed no work was available or that they were not qualified. Person who would have looked for work if they had not been temporarily ill or had it not been for bad weather. Person who were waiting for result of job applications. Person who had looked for work prior to the reference week.
      Source : Labour Force Survey , 2016
    • LABOUR FORCE FACT, 2016

      Labour force refers to all persons within the 15-64 years age-group who are either employed or unemployed during the reference week. This indicator has details by gender, age group and state.

      67.7%

      Labour Force Participation Rate (LFPR)

      of the working age population is in the labour force whilst the rest would be out of the labour force

      Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

      Labour Force Participation Rate, Gender

      Labour Force Participation Rate, Male

      Male

      80.2% of the male working age population is in the labour force

      80.2%
      Labour Force Participation Rate, Female

      Female

      In contrast, 54.3% of the female working age population is in the labour force.

      54.3%
      Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

      Labour Force Participation Rate, Age Group

      Gradman1

      Youth ( 15 - 24 )

      42.9% of the youth working age population is in the labour force, the rest is presumably in school.

      42.9%
      Labour Force Participation, Age Group ( 2015 )

      Adult ( 25 - 64 )

      77.4% of the adult working age population is in the labour force.

      77.4%
      Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

      Labour Force Participation Rate, State

      Perlis
      Perlis
      61.6%
      Sabah
      Sabah
      70.8%
      Pulau Pinang
      Pulau Pinang
      69.0%
      Kelantan
      Kelantan
      59.1%
      Kedah
      Kedah
      64.2%
      Terengganu
      Terengganu
      60.0%
      Perak
      Perak
      61.7%
      Pahang
      Pahang
      66.0%
      Selangor
      Selangor
      74.2%
      WP Kuala Lumpur
      WP Kuala Lumpur
      68.1%
      WP Putrajaya
      WP Putrajaya
      77.6%
      Negeri Sembilan
      Negeri Sembilan
      64.7%
      Melaka
      Melaka
      65.4%
      Johor
      Johor
      66.6%
      Serawak
      Sarawak
      67.7%
      WP Labuan
      WP Labuan
      66.5%
      • Perlis
        Perlis
        61.6%
      • Sabah
        Sabah
        70.8%
      • Pulau Pinang
        Pulau Pinang
        69.0%
      • Kelantan
        Kelantan
        59.1%
      • Kedah
        Kedah
        64.2%
      • Terengganu
        Terengganu
        60.0%
      • Perak
        Perak
        61.7%
      • Pahang
        Pahang
        66.0%
      • Selangor
        Selangor
        74.2%
      • WP Kuala Lumpur
        WP Kuala Lumpur
        68.1%
      • WP Putrajaya
        WP Putrajaya
        77.6%
      • Negeri Sembilan
        Negeri Sembilan
        64.7%
      • Melaka
        Melaka
        65.4%
      • Johor
        Johor
        66.6%
      • Serawak
        Sarawak
        67.7%
      • WP Labuan
        WP Labuan
        66.5%
        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

      • EMPLOYMENT FACT, 2016

        Employment refers to all working age persons who at any time during the reference week worked at least one hour for pay, profit or family gain. The rest are presumably unemployed or not on the labour force. This indicator has details by gender, age group, sector and occupation.


        96.6%

        Total Employment Rate

        of the labour force is employed in Malaysia.

        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

        Employment Rate, Gender

        Employment Rate, Gender (2015)

        Male

        96.9% of the male in labour force is employed.

        96.9%

        Female

        96.1% of the female in labour force is employed.

        96.1%
        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

        Employment Rate, Age Group

        Gradman1

        Youth (15-24)

        The proportion of employed youth to youth labour force is 89.5%.

        89.5%
        Workman1

        Adult (25-64)

        The proportion of employed adult to adult labour force is 98.1%

        98.1%
        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

        Employment Rate, Sector

        Total1aa
        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

        Employment Rate, Occupation

        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

      • UNEMPLOYMENT FACT, 2016

        The unemployment rate measures all persons in the workforce who did not work but were actively looking for work during reference week. This indicator has details by gender,age group and education attainment.


        3.4%

        Total Unemployment Rate

        of the labour force in Malaysia was unemployed.

        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

        Unemployment Rate, Gender

        Man1

        Male

        3.1%of male labour force is unemployed

        Workwomen1

        Female

        In contrast, 3.9%of female labour force is unemployed.

        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

        Unemployment Rate, Age Group

        Gradman1

        Youth ( 15 - 24 )

        10.5%of the youth labour force is unemployed.

        Workman1

        Adult ( 25 - 64 )

        1.9% of the adult labour force is unemployed.

        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM

        Unemployment Rate, Education Attainment

        Total2
        Source : ILMIA's estimates based on LFS 2016, DOSM