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Nearly 2,000 locals employed by South Korea’s SK Nexilis and China’s Kibing Group, says Sabah minister

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KOTA KINABALU, Nov 28 — South Korea’s SK Nexilis and China’s Kibing Group, two of Sabah’s biggest foreign investors in recent years, have jointly provided some 1,985 jobs to locals, said state Industrial Development and Entrepreneurship Minister Datuk Phoong Jin Zhe.

Phoong said copper foil manufacturer SK Nexilis and solar panel manufacturer Kibing Group have been operational since this year and contributed to a reduction in unemployment rates in Sabah.

“While initially facing difficulties in hiring Sabahans to fill job vacancies, we are proud that SK Nexilis and the Kibing Group’s workforce in Sabah comprises over 80 per cent Sabahans,” said Phoong.

“For now, out of 336 employees of SK Nexilis, 294 are Sabahans (87.5 per cent) while employees of Kibing’s plant in KKIP, 1,199 out of 1,439 are Sabahans (83.3 per cent).

“Out of 210 employees in Kibing’s plant in Sikuati, Kudat, 180 are Sabahans (85.71 per cent),” he said.

He said that efforts are being made to attract Sabahans working elsewhere, such as Singapore and West Malaysia to return to their state for work.

“This is an ongoing effort,” Phoong added.

Sabah has topped the list of unemployed in the country, making up some 29 per cent of the total of 588,700 jobless people in Malaysia.

In August, statistics showed there were currently some 169,800 jobless people in Sabah, a record for the state.

The unemployment rate in Sabah reached 7.7 per cent in the first quarter of this year, which is also more than double the 3.5 per cent rate for the whole country.