The local manufacturing industry in Malaysia is constantly challenged by the rising operational and labour cost, as well as the lack of higher skilled workers. Thus, there is a need for the industry players to revamp its manufacturing model and embrace digital technologies as well as greater automation to boost productivity, innovation and cost efficiency.
Aside from the technological advancement, the growth of Industry 4.0 in Malaysia will also hinge on the human capital factor in Malaysia. According to the National Industry 4.0 Policy, although Malaysia’s labour productivity has grown at 3 to 4% over the last few years, its relative global position and use of higher skilled labour has not moved forward: Malaysia’s labour productivity was ranked only at 44th position in 2016, a position that has remained unchanged since 2009.
As the nation transitions towards a productivity-driven economy, propelled by the nine pillars of Industry 4.0 which include Autonomous Robots, Simulation, System Integration, Internet of Things, Cybersecurity, Cloud Computing, Additive Manufacturing, Augmented Reality and Big Data, this will also create many new quality “jobs of the future” with different skillsets required. This is where the upskilling of the local talent through the Asia Center of Excellence for Smart Technologies (ACES) plays an important role.