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Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

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  #21 Old 07-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

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Originally Posted by mehul91 View Post
first of all, stress depends on people. some can cope more, some less.
I don't think the key issue here is "coping with stress". I think what Young was trying to say is that there's a lot of work to do.

My dad is self-employed but works late into the night at times. He even works during weekends and public holidays sometimes. Some lawyers I know once pulled a "doctor" and did a 24 hour shift while working with American clients [timezone issues, see]. It's not rare for people working in the corporate world to only go back at 3AM, etc.

Sure, there'll be the people who turn up exactly at 9AM and leave at 5PM sharp. But if you really want the cash [especially in the corporate sector], you work more. And that's what many people do in Malaysia.
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  #22 Old 07-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

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Originally Posted by mehul91 View Post
first of all, stress depends on people. some can cope more, some less.

tell me a place where you can eat lunch and dinner in RM 5. can you eat lunch and dinner in USD 5.of course not.and no doubt inflation is rising, but tell me where it isnt rising. everywhere is the same. you may argue our currency is weak, but in other country basic commodities is way expensive. petrol price in USA is higher than us.

and morality, is not what you only see outside. in uk and usa, teen pregnancy is on the rise. did you read in thesun, a 12 year old kid, if i'm not mistaken is a FATHER!!!!!!!!! and he says i'll tc of my son well. is this a joke. cant even tc of himself. but i have to agree with you on the point that morality in malaysia is not very good oso.

thats why i still prefer overseas. but hey one thing about malaysia, you know for sure that a bomb will not blast here or an airplane wont crash the klcc....cheers
About stress, you're not stating your argument. You're merely sidetracking it. The fact is, life in Malaysia is generally more stressful compared to life elsewhere. In Australia, every single shop closes around 5-8pm. Why? Because they can afford to close early. If a shop closes at the same time in Malaysia, that shop would go bankrupt.

Actually, the price of petrol in the USA is substantially cheaper compared to Malaysia. It costs only $0.61 per litre of petrol in the USA. And don't you tell me "Oh, after converting it's more expensive" because salaries in the US are higher. You do not compare prices between countries by converting currencies. You compare prices with the country's respective mean salaries.
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  #23 Old 08-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

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About stress, you're not stating your argument. You're merely sidetracking it. The fact is, life in Malaysia is generally more stressful compared to life elsewhere. In Australia, every single shop closes around 5-8pm. Why? Because they can afford to close early. If a shop closes at the same time in Malaysia, that shop would go bankrupt.

Actually, the price of petrol in the USA is substantially cheaper compared to Malaysia. It costs only $0.61 per litre of petrol in the USA. And don't you tell me "Oh, after converting it's more expensive" because salaries in the US are higher. You do not compare prices between countries by converting currencies. You compare prices with the country's respective mean salaries.

Haiz, we are not comparing australia and malaysia. We are comparing all the countries in the world with malaysia. Our workload is not that stressful as Japanese, and Chinese. Even american work longer than us. Go check the economist, there was article dated long time ago (cant remember when) but it clearly shows that china, japan, singapore are the ones who work most in one week. And its simple, if you are stress then dun work. There is no such thing as easy money. The only reason msian feel so stressful is because they are not precondition to it unlike singaporean and japanese. But yeah i'm not talking bout all msian, some are good at handling it. other are not.

And about petrol, price of crude oil is fixed globally so you have to convert the currency. its appox the same. and yeah y nothing mention about taxes. there is not only one factor that affects cost of living. there are others too. go read making globalization work by joseph stiglitz. you will able to understand better. the playing feel is not level and you cant make direct comparison. There are pro and cons, i dun deny.....but watever it is..we must embrace it, its not a perfect world.....
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  #24 Old 08-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

As Young has already put it clearly, it's pointless to compare the price of the petrol in itself without considering the purchasing power of the particular country. If Mongolia is selling petrol at half the price of Malaysia after conversion but the citizens only earn one tenth of our income, would you think they would throw a party to celebrate the fact that their petrol price is half ours?

Your point about taxation is valid, though one could make the case that even after tax the income is generally more comfortable in developed countries.
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  #25 Old 08-06-2009 Cool Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

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Originally Posted by youngyew View Post
As Young has already put it clearly, it's pointless to compare the price of the petrol in itself without considering the purchasing power of the particular country. If Mongolia is selling petrol at half the price of Malaysia after conversion but the citizens only earn one tenth of our income, would you think they would throw a party to celebrate the fact that their petrol price is half ours?

Your point about taxation is valid, though one could make the case that even after tax the income is generally more comfortable in developed countries.
true, you are right regarding the petrol but look from this point of view. After adding living expenses such as food, water, electricity, transportation, mortgage and etc, it comes up to the same thing. as you said their purchasing power is higher,but so is their living expenses. and things are not expensive in msia but with the tax and duty imposed, the price soars. and guys we always thing the grass is greener on the other side....and guys let talk about health care also. foreigner would actually like to come to places like msia and singapore because our health care is cheaper. in msia you can survive without insurance, but try doin that in usa or eu. you will go broke each time u make a trip to visit the doctor.

and one more thing, we are always comparing ourself with the advanced industrial country and the develop country. okay it makes sense because we want to compete with them. but at the same time i thing we must appreciate that despite, all the corruption and mat rempit, and social + political cases that are there, we live in peace without actually have to worry bout terrosit attack, suicide bombers and etc. and you will even appreciate even more if you actually go to countries like bangladesh and indonesia and zimbadwe. these ppl dun even have basic neccesity.

ps: am not sure why i am supporting msia
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  #26 Old 08-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

Hrmmmm....Interesting Topic,

Let me impart some of my experience here from the US, since I have studied here and working here for some time. Before I start, let me provide a little background on myself, so that you can see what I am weighing my options based on. I have a Ph.D in engineering, in my late 20s and is very actively involved with the academic research community here although I am currently working in the industry. My area is vehicle dynamics, specializing in braking systems and stability for cars and heavy trucks.

When i was weighing my options to come back, the only "safe" option I have is to be a lecturer in a local Uni, under the payroll of MOHE, with an assumed salary of about RM 80000/year. Taking into account the cost of living in Malaysia, and the high cost lost living in the particular area, after subtracting the cost of buying perodua and house payments, i deduced that my salary would be inadequate, unless my wife is working as well, and making a least RM 50000/year. The good news is that my salary does not include transportation allowances and other related allowances. However, in my area, there is not a lot of research done in Malaysia (lets face it, our automotive industry does not do research. Lotus does not count, they do not hire Malaysians in their research and development).

In the US, assuming I make the same amount, but in USD... I can have a 2 bedroom apt to myself with a garage for my Subaru Legacy GT, and still have half my salary left over after taxes. So yes the buying power is greater in the US, much greater. For how long, I don't know. Yes, you can get lunch and dinner here for USD 5 (read: dollar menu) round the clock. The research opportunities and equipment here are also already set up, so you dont have to fight for funding. I remember I attended the Brain Gain stuff at the embassy here in 2006, and was surprised that with RM 50 million, the government hopes to invest in Nano tech and Bio tech and have a return in investment in 5 years or less. I told them that the concept was unreasonable since many well equipped US universities have spent hundreds of millions of dollars in the last decades but have only started reaping the financial rewards recently.

I have to admit, I do miss Malaysian Food, however, the industrial climate in Malaysia is not right for the development of a high tech company, primarily because business is done based on factors other than ability. Most of the deals are done under the table or on a non-fair tender setup. I have friends in the civil service, and that is how I know.

The absurd ROI expected from research is also a turnoff for me. Whereas in the US, money for research is invested in topics of general interest(furthering the science), Malaysian agencies funds research based on their potential commercialization. This is not surprising since that is the malaysian culture (everythign we do must make money!).

Overall, Malaysia is not that bad, but I do not think that now is the time for people like me to return. Oppotunities are not there and the culture is not right for my line of work either. Dont get me wrong, I will return back to Malaysia one day, just not today. And if I do go back, I will be working for myself, not any of the malaysian private companies. Malaysians have the wrong concept of K-economy. K-economy means that u start exporting knowledge as your main export. In my opinion, Malaysia has been very successful, since it has been exporting talent for years. Will this trend continue, I let u be the judge.
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  #27 Old 08-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

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true, you are right regarding the petrol but look from this point of view. After adding living expenses such as food, water, electricity, transportation, mortgage and etc, it comes up to the same thing. as you said their purchasing power is higher,but so is their living expenses. and things are not expensive in msia but with the tax and duty imposed, the price soars. and guys we always thing the grass is greener on the other side....and guys let talk about health care also. foreigner would actually like to come to places like msia and singapore because our health care is cheaper. in msia you can survive without insurance, but try doin that in usa or eu. you will go broke each time u make a trip to visit the doctor.

and one more thing, we are always comparing ourself with the advanced industrial country and the develop country. okay it makes sense because we want to compete with them. but at the same time i thing we must appreciate that despite, all the corruption and mat rempit, and social + political cases that are there, we live in peace without actually have to worry bout terrosit attack, suicide bombers and etc. and you will even appreciate even more if you actually go to countries like bangladesh and indonesia and zimbadwe. these ppl dun even have basic neccesity.

ps: am not sure why i am supporting msia
I'm going to use Australia as benchmark for comparison to clearly disprove your point about living expenses.

Person A is a Malaysian engineer, a graduate from UM. Person B is a Malaysian engineer who graduated from UNSW and resides and works in Australia.

Person A's starting salary upon graduation - RM 3,000 a month. (I'm being extremely generous here.) That works out to be RM36,000 a year.
Person B's starting salary upon graduation - A$ 51,000 a year. (Good University Guide 2009)

Person A, after income tax deductions, pays no tax in a given year. Person B, after deductions, pays roughly A$9,300 in income taxes. Hence his net earnings is A$41,700. Person A's net earnings is RM36,000.

Now let's look at expenses. For the comparison to be effective, both person's will be leading identical lives.
The four main expenses in any employee's day to day life are;
A) Housing & Utilities
B) Transportation
C) Living Expense (Food, Entertainment and Leisure.)
D) Savings.

HOUSING AND RELATED EXPENSES

Say both individuals live in rented housing (a one room apartment) near the center of their respective cities. Person A will pay (on KL rates) close to RM18,000 a year on rental.
Person B will pay (on Sydney rates) around A$ 15,600 a year on rental.

Person A will pay a further RM 6,000 a year for handphone, internet, electricity, water and cable tv.

Person B will pay a further A$ 4,080 a year for a triple play Handphone, Internet and Cable TV package and electricity and water.

TRANSPORTATION

Let's say both these individuals drive to work on a daily basis. They both purchase a new Honda Civic 2008 upon graduation as their first vehicle.

Person A pays RM 130,000. Person B pays A$ 29,000. Assuming they both have taken out a 10 year loan of 90% of the car value and this 10 year loan is at 3% interest. Adding fuel and maintanence, assuming they use a full tank every week.

Person A pays RM12,400 a year for the loan + RM4680 a year for fuel + RM 600 a year on maintanence = RM17,680
Person B pays A$3024 a year for the loan + A$ 3120 a year for fuel + A$ 600 a year on maintanence = A$ 6744.

LIVING EXPENSES

Let's take it that both of them purchase groceries and cook one meal a day at home, eat one meal out at work and have a simple breakfast everyday.

Person A - RM 3650 (Lunch at work everyday) + RM 5200 a year on weekly groceries. = RM8850
Person B - A$ 4368 (Lunch at work everyday) + A$ 3120 a year on weekly groceries. = A$7488 a year. (This is an overestimation, groceries in Australia are very very cheap but just for the heck of it.)

Assuming they both go out for a movie and two drinks a week.

Person A - RM 6760 a year on entertaiment.
Person B - A$ 4680 a year on entertainment.

Now let's tally up the totals and see the "savings" each Person has left at the end of the year.

Person A, Earnings - RM 36,000, Expenses - RM 57,290.
Net Savings - -RM21290

Person B, Earnings - A$ 41,700, Expenses - A$38,592
Net Savings - +A$ 3108

And that's IN THE FIRST YEAR OF EMPLOYMENT. The Malaysian Engineer is already living RM21,290 in debt in his first year. The Australian Engineer is already having a A$3108 surplus and this will continue to grow. The Malaysian Engineer will be forced to take a massive hit in living standards to even break even, let's not even talk about saving any money.

This entire analysis is very much in the surface, if we studied closer and fixed more variables that were ignored, the disparity will be even greater. (Oh and btw, Australia has free public healthcare which is of significantly better quality than Malaysian public healthcare. This analysis is assuming that both the Malaysian and Australian use only public healthcare.)
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  #28 Old 08-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

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Originally Posted by mehul91 View Post
true, you are right regarding the petrol but look from this point of view. After adding living expenses such as food, water, electricity, transportation, mortgage and etc, it comes up to the same thing. as you said their purchasing power is higher,but so is their living expenses. and things are not expensive in msia but with the tax and duty imposed, the price soars. and guys we always thing the grass is greener on the other side....and guys let talk about health care also. foreigner would actually like to come to places like msia and singapore because our health care is cheaper. in msia you can survive without insurance, but try doin that in usa or eu. you will go broke each time u make a trip to visit the doctor.

and one more thing, we are always comparing ourself with the advanced industrial country and the develop country. okay it makes sense because we want to compete with them. but at the same time i thing we must appreciate that despite, all the corruption and mat rempit, and social + political cases that are there, we live in peace without actually have to worry bout terrosit attack, suicide bombers and etc. and you will even appreciate even more if you actually go to countries like bangladesh and indonesia and zimbadwe. these ppl dun even have basic neccesity.

ps: am not sure why i am supporting msia
For the first bolded part of the post, I just have one thing to say: Have you ever lived in the US/UK before? And managed your life there/seen people managing their salary? I completely understand and accept your points, and I do accept your reasoning for saying all this; after all, from your point of view, it really does sound like everyone else in this topic are ungrateful idiots. XD

But it's not as bad as you make it out to be. Life in the UK may involve high taxes/expensive utility bills, but people there are pretty good at getting past that. They turn off the lights [when not using] to conserve energy and whenever possible turn the heaters off, while in Malaysia stuff like that doesn't happen since electricity and water is so damn cheap.

It's all about adapting.

Also, let's talk numbers since I don't think you'll believe any of us until you see the figures for yourself. Working as a solicitor in a Magic Circle firm nets me about GBP5000 a month [yes guys I'm not kidding you, solicitors in London are filthy rich]. After deducting 40% for income tax, that leaves me with GBP3000. A week's groceries would roughly cost me GBP 20 at the very most [based on personal experience], so that translates to GBP80 a month. Firms usually give me accommodation allowance so worries about expensive London accommodation are more or less taken care of.

Let's contrast with living in Malaysia. Starting salary for lawyers? RM2000. [I'm not even going to bother deducting EPF out of this]. Cost of groceries per week? Maybe around RM50 due to the relatively poorer purchasing power of the ringgit. So that's RM200 per month gone for groceries. I don't think I get accommodation allowances from Malaysian law firms, so sucks to be me when I have to shell out money for rent.

Things in the UK aren't as expensive as you think they are, it's all about careful spending.

Also, did I mention? Healthcare in the UK is provided free-of-charge by the National Health Service.

I really understand your sentiments, I do know that Malaysia is our home country after all, but you really do need to have proper facts when trying to compare it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by digimushu View Post

Malaysians have the wrong concept of K-economy. K-economy means that u start exporting knowledge as your main export. In my opinion, Malaysia has been very successful, since it has been exporting talent for years. Will this trend continue, I let u be the judge.
Quoted for the effin' WIN. That certainly made my day. XD
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Last edited by Glassylicious; 08-06-2009 at 02:03 PM.
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  #29 Old 08-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

I am a Malaysian parent working overseas in the past 3 decades, I came from a poor family, rounded up in a new village during confrontation time when I was in transition, just because I am a Malaysian Chinese living in the area at the time. I managed to get out of the place and did well later in HSC. Considered career in Engineering/physics, medicine or law, but choose EE (closest to physics). I built radios, transimitters etc as a hobby, when I was a kid, got old equipment from telecoms etc for the school. I saw the opportunities in electronics. I was looking for self identity and future/security. I did not belong in PRC, KMT (Taiwan) and in Malaysia -- a second class citizen in the constitution and "imprisoned" me for doing nothing wrong. So, the only way I could get security is to have something people need and can not be taken away. Hence I need to be really good in something important -- electronics.
Rejected government scholarship offer because it was not in the line with what I wanted/believe in, hard to find anyone interested in electronics except a few of us die hards (who are in other countries as well) at the time.
I work outside Malaysia not because of pay, but education of the future generation and a fair society where we can develop our talent and contribute to the society at large meant a lot to me (and to a lot of highly qualified professionals too). I was happy to see products I have developed used in many applications, provided employment to people across the continents. We have changed the world with what we did. I was lucky but I saw a lot of others in similar situations were not so lucky. I can not be sure that my kids would be so lucky, if they were born in Malaysia.
I almost went back a few times, once after my job offer to work in Silicon Valley (USA), visa issued and relocation expenses paid by company, I went back and talk to a few govserment departments and decided to leave, after talking.
I had mentors in Silicon Valley who are white, Indian and Chinese. they took me in as part of the family, no discrimination. Was senior manager at MNC and VPs in high tech start ups, funded with capital in USA. Managed multiple engineering departments across different sites in US and overseas, with people of different races, but never had a race problem. Have more than 10 US and international patents issued.
I love Malaysia, that is why I still keep my citizenship, but I am worried for our fellow Malaysians. We are not developing the best human resources to compete effectively. Take this as an example, in the 70s, 80s Malaysia was ahead of China in many fields, but in the name if equality, we were preoccupied with who owns what rather than to nurture Malaysian companies to compete effectively world wide. Look at what China is doing now, take ZTE, China Development Bank just gave them a US$10B credit to fund their overseas projects. What this does is to create market for Chinese products and job opportunity at home. USA did it in the past, the Japanese did it, Singapore is doing it and Taiwan is doing it with ITRI, but our beloved Malaysia ?? We contribute our best talents to the world.
With policy problem and lack of critical mass, I do not see how we can compete. We are still arguing over what medium to teach science and math rather than trying to teach science and math well. In Darwin's time, Sarawak was at the forefront of evlutionary biology. Wallace (read Darwin's introduction to the Origin of Species, if you do not know who he is) was at Santubong doing his seminal work, but where are we now?
Life is not about money, it is about a future we can share in. At times when I am doing better I will share with others what I have/can, but when I or my future generations run into problem and need help, hope others will help them too. In this way we will build a security blanket for each other, so that we all can try to achieve our dreams. I owe a lot to the kind people of Malaysia, especially the natives of Sarawak, who took my ancestors in, arriving empty handed, hungry from China. This is just a part of the history of human migration -- and the cycles continues.

regards,
Frank Chong
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  #30 Old 08-06-2009 Default Re: Given a choice, would you work in Malaysia?

Well I understand that a lot of people's sentiment toward the country has changed in the recent years due to myriad of events. I do not disagree towards all of you who have express your opinion. Most if not all of what has been said here true. I clearly understands frankchong when he said that we are being treated like second class citizens. No doubt on that. But we nevertheless can't deny that who we are or what we are is somehow because of the way we have brought up in Malaysia. The country maybe not directly but indirecly have instilled values into us and make us a better person. Besides that, 50++ years from independence, we may not be the best country around but at least we are somehow safe and secure. Our students somehow have despite having a horrendous education system, have excelled and been to top institution in the world such as Harvard, Yale, Cambridge and etc. You may say that success depends more on the person and i agree with you but it also depends the education we have receive. Although Malaysia may not be the ideal place to work, it still is our country and we owe part if not all of our success to it. We should then at least appreciate that we are not born in some impoverished country without proper access to water and food, what more education. It is completely natural to compare with elite but lets not forget although we are not the elite, we are certainly well equiped compared to the likes of Bhutan, Mexico, Zimbabwe and etc. I believe the only thing that need to change in this country is the political scenario. And change for the better I mean, then alot of people would love to work here as well
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