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» » » » Government of Malaysia’s Initiative for Green Economy and the TVET Response

Scholarly Technical Education Publication Series (STEPS) Vol. 2


Government of Malaysia’s Initiative for Green Economy and the TVET Response


Author:

    Mohlis bin Jaafar
    Director General
    Department of Polytechnic Education
    Ministry of Education, Malaysia
    mjfaryip@gmail.com

    Roslee bin Yahya
    Politeknik Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
    rosleeyahya@gmail.com

    Hazrat Hussain
    Faculty Consultant
    CPSC, Manila, Philippines
    drhazrat@cpsctech.org

Abstract

Sustainable development is a development strategy that manages the finances, physical assets, natural environment and human resources to improve the wealth and qulity of life for a long term period. In economic context, sustainable development has been appreciated to be crucial and applicable for many countries, and Malaysia is no exception. One of the National Green Technology Policy Strategic thrusts is to intensify human capital development in sustainable development. The motivation should be the ability to supply green technology initiatives for the demand of the local and global markets, creation of opportunities and contributing to the growth of the national economy.

Today, the knowledge of TVET is a precious key indicator of the effort for sustainable growth to be maintained in the present and future situations. The expanding knowledge and new technologies at the workplace demanded for the new types of skills in green technologies and TVET has to be responsive to take up its share of the challenge. Hence, as a TVET implementer, Malaysian polytechnics should take the initiative to be responsible in giving public awareness towards sustainable development through short and long term sustainable integration development programs in order to produce competitive and excellent human resources.

Keywords: Sustainable development, TVET, Initiative and planning stage.


Background

In 2005, the United Nations launched the Decade for Education for Sustainable Development that aims to provide an opportunity for refining and promoting the vision of and transition to sustainable development – through all forms of education, public awareness and training. This agreement also targets to develop an enhanced profile to the importance of education and learning in the sustainable development concept. The integration of education towards sustainable development has been emphasized in the subsequent international conferences such as the United Nations Comission on Environmen and Development (UNCED) conferences held in Stockholm (1972) and in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1992). The UNCED conference in 1992 outlined a comprehensive action plan (Agenda 21) which includes the principles to support the government of a country and other institutions in implementing the policies and programs of sustainable development. Agenda 21 also expresses the importance of education in order to accomplish sustainable development as stated in UNCED, 1992; “Education is critical for promoting sustainable development and improving the capacity of the people to address sustainable development issues”

National and Regional Policies on Green Technology

Developed countries have been able to intensify their efforts to integrate green technology applications into their way of life as the world entered the new millennium. Malaysia, a country that targets to reach the “developed” status by 2020, is not an exception in integrating sustainable development practices and concepts in the overall economic practice. The revolution of green technology in Malaysia is developing after the establishment of the Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water (KeTTHA) in April 9, 2009 with the vision to be the industry leader in the sustainable development of energy, the national water and green technology product and services. Since then, the Malaysian government has expedited efforts to plan, formulating programs and align policies to promote green technology as the government agenda to lead a new iniative addressing global issues on environmental pollution, ozone depletion, global warming and other issues related.

National Green Technology Policy

Malaysia launched the National Green Technology Policy (NGTP) in July 2009 in conformance to the overall trend to adopt sustainable development practices. It targets to provide a direction and motivation for Malaysians to continuously enjoy good quality living and healthy environment through the reduction of the carbon footprint without compromising economic growth. According to the Economic Planning Unit of the Prime Minister’s Office of the Government of Malaysia (2009), this policy aims to:

  1. To reduce the energy usage rate and at the same time increase economic growth.
  2. To facilitate the growth of the Green Technology industry and enhance its contribution to the national economy.
  3. To increase national capability and capacity for innovation in Green Technology development and enhance Malaysia’s competitiveness in Green Technology in the global arena.
  4. To ensure sustainable development and conserve the environment for future generations.
  5. To enhance public education and awareness on Green Technology and encourage its widespread use.

Based on sound economic and social principles, with the aspirations of the Malaysians in mind, NGTP was established based on four pillars namely:

  • Energy

    In the long run, the plan seeks to attain energy sufficiency while promoting its efficient use to the direct and indirect consumers

  • Environment

    The plan seeks that economic activities will minimize the adverse impact on the environment

  • Economy

    The plan foresees that national development will be enhanced through the efficient use of technological advancements.

  • Social

    The plan aims to promote a higher quality of life for all Malaysians in the present and future generations.

Green Technology and the Tenth Malaysia Plan

The Tenth Malaysia Plan spanning from 2011 to 2015 will focus on 12 National Key Economic Areas or NKEAs which have potential to generate high income. For economic sectors not listed as NKEAs, such as green technology, automotive, aerospace and logistics, the development of these sectors will continue to be driven by relevant ministries, agencies and councils.

Under the 10th MP, the Government has introduced the AFFIRM framework of Awareness, Faculty, Finance, Infrastructure, Research and Marketing which outlined the government’s approach towards creating a comprehensive ecosystem for environmental sustainability.

  • Awareness: This concept of the framework introduces the need for all Malaysians to accept the shared responsibility of environmental protection and conservation. This policy directs households, offices and industries to segregate their wastes and also encourages them to save on utilities such as electricity. Cooperative efforts will also be pursued with the private sector and civil society organizations to raise consciousness on this need.
  • Faculty: The government will make an effort to integrate green technology and practices in the curriculum of schools and institutes of higher learning.
  • Finance: Schemes and incentives will be offered to businesses adopting green technology in their operations. A soft loan grant of 1.5 million MYR will be offered to jumpstart the implementation of sustainable development practices. On top of that, tax incentives and breaks will be offered to building contractors and designers who will opt to design environment-friendly buildings and infrastructure.
  • Infrastructure: Part of the government’s long term plan is to create green communities in Putrajaya and Cyberjaya. These communities will spearhead the adoption of guidelines aimed in reducing the carbon footprint as compared to other townships.
  • Research: As a part of its overall development scheme, the government will ensure that research, development and commercialization initiatives on green technology will gain ground through partnerships with local research centres and institutes. Foreign expertise will also be tapped to assist local efforts, keeping into mind the adoption of the global standards for sustainable development.
  • Marketing: Through KeTTA together with Standard and Industrial Research Institute of Malaysia (SIRIM), the government will expedite the development of a national eco-labelling scheme and standards. These standards, adopting international standards for labelling and identifying green technology products and services, will be in support of the government’s green procurement initiative. It will also aim in assisting local manufacturers to develop their local industries and at the same time take into account their potential impact to the environment.
  • Increase Malaysia’s competitiveness.

Green Technology Initiatives & Programs in Malaysia

Various green technology initiatives have been created by the government through the years in line with the efforts of the country to achieve a “developed country” status by the year 2020. The establishment of KeTTHA has provided landmark achievements in the usage of green technology applications for governmental, economic and social activities and initiatives. Some of these are the following:

National Green Technology Council & Climate Change

The National Green Technology Council and Climate Change on the ministry level were established in 2009 to facilitate the coordination among government ministries, agency and private sector and key stakeholders on green initiatives. The Council is supported by a steering committee to formulate policies, identifies strategic issues, coordinates, monitors and evaluates in the development of the National Green Technology Policy and Green Technology programs at national level. Another agency, the Malaysian Green Tech Agency (GTAC) was tasked to coordinate and implement the Green Technology Initiatives and programs of the Malaysian government and to work closely with the National Green Technology Council.

Green Technology Infrastructure Masterplan

The Green Technology Roadmap, formulated by the National Green Technology Council and the Malaysian Green Tech Agency, was created to guide Malaysia in becoming a low carbon green growth economy. The action plan consisted of a baseline study on six identified sector which are: energy, building, transportation, water and waste management, manufacturing and information communication technology with the purpose of the baseline is to identify the current status application of Green Technology. The second phase of the action plan will cover the design of the Low Carbon Economy action plan which will cover major economic sectors and to develop detailed guidelines to make the National Green Technology Policy a reality.

Green Technology Financing Scheme (GTFS)

The Green Technology Financing Scheme (GTFS) was introduced in Malaysia in 2010 as a way to attract the industry sector in adopting environment-friendly operations and practices, as well as adopt the green technology approach in their innovations. The scheme was given an allocation of RM 1.5 billion for the producers and users of green technology. For producers, the maximum loan that can be provided is RM50 million and RM10 million for user companies. In 2010, a total of 219 projects were certified green. Of the total, 76 projects with total funding deals worth RM1.016 billion were offered funding from financial institutions involved. (Budget Speech 2010, announced Oct: 2009).

The 2nd Strategic thrust in NGTP outline the needs of a conducive environment which focused on economic aspects in green technology. With the growth of the green technology industry in mind, the industry partners involved in the scheme would supply green technology products to the local and global markets, create jobs and contribute towards the national economy to fulfil the objectives of the Green Technology Policy.

As a sign of commitment in creating an environment conducive to the development of a green technology, the Malaysian government has extended the funding with an additional allocation of funds by RM 2 billion.

Low Carbon Cities Framework (LCCF)

KeTTHA, in collaboration with the GreenTech Malaysia and the Malaysian Institute of Planners in 2010-11, has developed the Low Carbon Cities Framework (LCCF) that takes into consideration the framework and assessment of the cities for their conversion as places that generate low carbon emissions. This document can assist local authorities, developers and city planners in the development of townships to reduce their emission levels by 40%, which is concurrent to the government’s target of 40% carbon emission intensity reduction measured by GDP per capita by the year 2020 as compared to 2005 levels (Koyoto, 2009).

It is a system that measures the level of carbon emissions based on a performance criteria such as: (1) Urban environment, (2) Urban infrastructure, (3) Building and (4) Urban transportation.

LCCF can be used to promote application and development of the green technology in Malaysia and help strengthen and improve sustainability of the community towards creating green and sustainable practices, thus contributing to the reduction of GHG emissions. Currently, KeTTHA is working with 13 strategic partners and plan 5 pilot projects in cooperation with local authorities and stakeholders to enhance and promote the application of this LCCF.

Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Roadmap Masterplan

One of the initiatives is promoting the use of electric vehicles in order to reduce the use of fossil fuels including diesel. This also include cooperation with electric vehicle manufacturers to implement a pilot program on electric vehicles for passenger vehicles. The program is being implemented in the area around Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur to get the technical data and the views of the public in preparing the Master Plan Electric Vehicles (Electric Vehicle Masterplan) starting in 2013.

MyHIJAU Program

In addition, the Ministry is also developing an integrated program to enhance and develop green products and services in Malaysia. The program, known as MyHIJAU Program consists of four sub-programs which will include the production stage up to the stage it is marketed, the MyHIJAU SME & Entrepreneurs, MyHIJAU Labeling, MyHIJAU Directory and MyHIJAU Acquisition.The main objective of this program is to coordinate and streamline all development initiatives, green products and services in Malaysia, to develop the capacity and skills of the industry, especially Small and Medium Enterprises and local entrepreneurs in the production of green products more competitive and increase community awareness and knowledge about the importance conservation of the environment through the concept of sustainable production and consumption (Green Prosect Asia: 2014).The support of buying green or eco-friendly product / service will be the top choice among consumers in the future.

Renewable Energy

Renewable Energy (RE) was announced as the fifth fuel in the energy supply mix. In the year 2005, it has contributed at least 5% of the country’s total electricity demand, and it is projected to even rise as the years pass. A lot of efforts are being done to encourage the utilization of renewable energy resources such as biomas, biogas, solar, mini hydro for energy generation.

A program to increase the awareness of the RE and energy are conducted by the Centre of Education and Training in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (CETREE) as announced in the 8th Malaysian Plan (2000).

Renewable Energy (RE) Act and Sustainable Energy Development Authority Act

In April 2010 the government approved the RE Policy and Action Plan, RE Act and Sustainable Energy Development Authority Act. The Feed in Tariff mechanism have been introduced in December 2011. RE Capacity is expected to increase from 73 MW in 2011 to 2,080 MW in 2020. By 2030, RE generation is estimated to grow to about 3,000 MW.

The Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water and the Ministry of Education together with the Ministry of Human Resources will work together to produce a system of grading and certifications mechanism for competent personnel in GT.

Green Jobs Program

The target to shift towards the green jobs initiative is consistent with Malaysia’s Vision 2020- a vision aimed in achieving a high-income status by emphasizing inclusive and sustainable growth. The Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water (KeTTHA), the government agency that is tasked to carry such responsibility, considers “green technology” as product, equipment or systems which minimize environmental degradation, have low or zero green house gas emissions, are safe to use for all forms of life, minimize the use of energy and resources and promote the use of renewable sources for energy.

The transition of jobs with green and clean development mechanisms will ensure sustainability and higher value addion. Besides, the National Green Technology (NGT) policy asserts that green technology shall be a driver to accelerate the national economy and promote sustainable development. Based on several government policies, initiatives, regulations and other legal framework the green technology has gradually developed a gradually expanding market for green products, services and packaged solutions. The areas have been identified to be the focus of economic activities in the green technology sectors:

  • agriculture, including fishery and forestry
  • energy
  • buildings
  • transport
  • water and waste water management
  • solid waste management


Figure 1: Green Technology utilization by Sector (2010)

The green technology contributions to the total economic output can account for as much as 1-2 % of the total Malaysian economy, measured in GDP. As of 2010, the total jobs created by the green technology initiatives reached near 200,000 levels, specifically shown in the table below.

Table 1: Employment in Green Jobs per Sector, 2010

Source: Green Job Mapping Study in Malaysia (ILO-2014)

The budget announcement for 2014 made some encouraging steps in enhancing green growth initiatives. Some of the approved projects include the: (1) National Carbon Reporting Program or My Carbon, (2) tax exemption for green jobs and services, (3) National Conservation Fund, (4) Investment Tax allowance & tax exemption for green technology products and services, (5) Establishment of Malaysian Green Foundation (6) Conduct of regular energy audit of public buildings, and (7) Exploration of energy saving schemes such as the installation of solar panels and the replacement of ordinary light bulbs with energy-efficient LED lights are some of the initiatives that will promote investment in green growth and will open more green jobs to the labor market.

With the success in increasing the allocation in the budget and improved policy decisions, it is projected that investement in green technology will escalate which in turn will translate into additional employment opportunities. Agencies in-charge of developing personnel such as the Ministry of Human Resources should be able to cope with a higher demand on green technology courses in higher education and technical education systems in the country through capacity building, updated curriculum and adoption of modern methods of imparting knowledge through simulations and real-life on-the-job training.

Some of the initiatives taken by the department of polytechnic education and other related organizations have been encapsulated in the following discussion.

Green Technology Initiatives Integrated in TVET Programs/ Activities

Strategic thrust 3 of the National Green Technology Plan (NGTP) specifically indicated that the government needs to intensify the human capital development in green technology through the increase in training and education programs, integration of courses and topics under green technology into the national school syllabus (vocational and technical), and the increase of the number of modules and courses related to green technology in both public and private higher education institutes. It also advocates for programs and schemes focused on enhancing competency of the semi-skilled labor through further development programs and assert the certification mechanism for competent personnel in green technology areas.

The integration of green topics will provide the primary knowledge and hands on experience on GT elements at a very young age. It is also to preare more undergraduates or postgraduate level qualified workforce in the field of GT so as to meet the demand of the green jobs labor force in the country.

Apart from the integration and development of curricula for skills related to new and emerging green technologies i.e Solar Panel Packaging, wind turbine installation, hydroelectric power technician etc., the policy direction advocate for financial support for students that pursue green technology programs and fiscal incentives for institution that offer programs in green technologies. It also campaigns an increased role on TVET agencies to enhance the employability of personnel who have the competencies in green technology.

Apart from integrating/introducing new green technology concepts and programs, thrust area 4 specifically identified the need to establish strong linkages with the different research institutes and industries to increase the network of academic and technical know-how that aims to put forward innovations in the field of green technology.

During the Malaysia GreenTech Awards, held on 13 October 2013, the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin suggested to the Ministry of Education to plan a syllabus and course related to the green technology development. Not only that, he also suggested the local and private institutions to offer more green technology development courses to fulfill the market needs in Malaysia. The ministry of education has conducted a measurements analysis and curriculum related to green technology in primary and secondary schools. As a result of the analysis it was found that the integration of green topic is not comprehensive and should be updated.

KeTTHA has been working with the Department of Skill Development, Ministry of Human Resources (MoHR) to develop the Green Jobs Roadmap for the country. The creation of the Green Jobs Roadmap is for the development of criteria documents consist of the Occupational Analysis (OA) and the National Competency Standard (NCS) and National Occupational Skills Standard (NOSS) on Green Technology. OA and NCS documents have approve by the MoHR by 2010. International Labor Organisation (ILO) also helped out in providing a “roadmap” for green jobs in Malaysia.

In line with the green growth map of Malaysia and Polytechnic Transformation Plan (2010) the Deprtment of Polytechnic is pursuing the greening TVET Initiatives through the following major areas in their institutions, workshops and office (Mukhlis: 2014):


Figure 2: Greening TVET Framework

While pursuing the above five major greening initiatives, the DPE continues to pursue the conversion of their operations into greener types through the application of basic principles of Reuse, Recycle, Reduce, Repair, Recycle and Rethink.

Malaysian polytechnics have taken awareness actions towards green technology and developed programs and activities within the organization through the years. Some of the green technology initiatives that were integrated into polytechnic programs include:

  • New program offered related to environmental protection
  • Embedding green technology elements in the curriculum
  • Staff training on green technology
  • Strengthening green technology modules in the existing programs
  • Collaboration with industries
  • Sustainable energy management

In accordance to the National Green Technology Policy, the former Director General of the Department Polytechnic Education (DPE) of the Ministry of Education (formerly known as Ministry of Higher Education), Dato’ Hj Imran Idris supported the idea of introducing the green technology in the polytechnic courses in Malaysia. Since the introduction of a new cabinet portfolio and the establishment of KeTTHA in 2010, this initiative has been moving in a remarkable pace, with the recent achievement of its introduction to the Polytechnic Transformation Roadmap (2010-2020)

Program development in the based on green technology has been introduced via new programs offered in the polytechnic such as Diploma in Environmental Engineering in 2003. Few more programs are developed to increase the skilled workforce in green technology industries such as:

  • Diploma in Environment Engineering (Waste Water Treatment),
  • Diploma in Electrical Engineering (Green Energy)
  • Diploma in Electrical Engineering (Energy Efficiency)
  • Degree in Engineering Technology (Sustainable and Technology)

These programs are intended to produce a workforce that is sensitive to the issues of environmental management, environmental laws and regulation and environmental protection.

Industry collaboration is advantageous to polytechnics. This is implemented through advisory committee, curriculum development, industry dialogue, internship programs; work based learning programs, employability and entreprenuership programs etc. As for the green technology industry, the polytechnics are collaborating with Proton Holdings to design a curriculum on Advanced Diploma in Automotive Design and Manufacturing Development curriculum which focuses on the latest development in the design and manufacturing of vehicles.

Embedding generic concepts, skill and sustainable development attitudes in the new and current program has been applied in polytecnics through revising and aligning the curriculum in accordance to Malaysian Qualification Framework (MQF). MQF was established as a framework in Malaysia’s declaration about its qualifications and their quality in relation to its education system.

MQF is an instrument that develops and classifies qualifications based on a set of criteria that are approved nationally and are benchmarked against international best practices, and which clarifies the earned academic levels, learning outcomes of study areas and credit system based on student academic load. These criteria are accepted and used for all qualifications awarded by recognized higher education providers. Hence, MQF integrates and links with all national qualifications.

Revision and realignment processes include incorporating core competencies and strengthening green technology modules in existing programs such as Diploma in Building Service Engineering, Diploma in Civil Engineering, Food Technology, Agrotechnology and Bio-Industry, Tourism and Hospitality. All the programs have included new modules on green technology such as environmental science, water and waste water engineering and management and environmental pollution and control, etc.

Twenty National Occupational Skill Standards (NOSS) such as Green Technology Compliance, Solar Installation & Maintenance, Waste Water Treatment Operator, Energy Audit Data Measurement dan Solid Waste Collection Operation has been

Table 2: Green Technology Programs Offered by the Malaysian Polytechnic Institutions

(Source: National Institute of Human Resources, Ministry of Human Resources)

developed by the Department of Skills Development. The other 68 green technology NOSS are to be developed in the future (JPM 2013). These documents become references for TVET institutions in designing their courses and programs related to green technology. As a major initiative, the Ministry of Human Resources Development has come up with standardized training program as their National Ocuppational Skill Standards (NOSS) in the following green technology trades.

The Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water and the MoE together with MoHR will work together to produce a system of grading and certification mechanisms for competent personnel in GT. To produce a holistic graduate as mentioned in National Educational Philosophies, Soft Skill module is taught across all the programs of study in polytechnics. This module includes communication skills, professional ethics, positive personality, environmental issues such as environmental sustainability, pollution, recycle, reuse of materials and equipment maintenance.

Green technology awareness programs have also been carried out in polytechnics through different events and activities. Some of the programs are green technology seminars and workshops, green technology innovation and creation competitions and recycled models competitions. Students’ projects and colleges’ developmental projects put strong emphasis on the environment-friendly technologies solutions and many of the students’ innovation projects received national awards in the innovative projects competitions. Students also participated in the international competitions with focus on green technologies innovative packages, inventions and solutions. The following are some of the projects that cater to environmental issues as displayed at the Politeknik Ungko Omar (PUO), Perak (APACC on-site visit reports 2014):

  1. Solar ECOFAN for waste waster treatment developed and tested by in collaboration with REHADA.
  2. PERODUA Eco- Challenge- Automotive fuel saving Technology
  3. Rubbish Truck Leaching Filter
  4. Trash Collector from Canals
  5. Compact Refrigerant Recovery Machines

These projects have won national and international awards. Similar projects are being developed in other polytechnic systems as well.

Sustainable Energy Management Programs is an initiative program carried out as a key priority in the 10MP that emphasize energy efficiency measures in residential buildings among the five areas. The polytechnic transformation plan outlines the indicators for facility management of professional bodies, associations and researchers and one important indicator is the work environment management (Awang, et al, 2013). In October 2013, Merlimau Polytechnic has been awarded Energy Efficiency Management Excellent Award for Building Category. The Award was organised by the Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water. In years to come, polytechnics will always be involved directly to the implementation of the green technology campaign to educate and increase the awareness on green technology among the Malaysian society. The department of polytechnic have issued memoranda to all polytechnics to gradually replace all lighting systems to energy saving lighting bulbs like LED. Also, new constructions are all integrated with the rain harvesting mechanism as guided by the 10MP initiatives for providing public utilities and services.

The Politeknik Ungku Omar (PUO) is one of the polytechnic institutions in the country that capitalizes on the use of digital technology to efficiently utilize their resources and at the same time promote an inclusive and sustainable innovation that can be adopted in the years to come.

  • Internal communications are being facilitated by a specially designed software aimed at reducing the use of paper items in the official and non-official transactions between the DPE and its Polytechnic Colleges. Other initiatives were developed in lieu of this initiative like: (1) Uploading all inventory in the online database, (2) Training modules collected and accessed in a specially designed software called the CIDOS, (3) Processing of applications for admissions are online, (4) Enabling a database on teachers and staff through the HRMIS software that is also publicly available and (5) Developing an intranet facility called E-PUO where teachers, staff and students can process all documents with the office. uploading all inventory into an online website
  • All training modules are uploaded to specially designed software called CIDOS. Teachers and students can access and make necessary transactions online
  • Applications for admissions are processed online
  • HRMIS has been developed to maintain databased of teachers and staff and make transaction of information through the special website
  • For in-house use Polytechnic Ungku Omar has developed its intranet called E-PUO where teacher, staff and students can process all documents with the office. E-hadir is one example where it records daily attendance in th campus.

On top of these, the College Community Education Department pushed for the establishment of the Technology Training Center for hybrid and electrical vehicles in Malaysia through a strategic collaboration with the automobile industry. The centre will produce about 1200 highly skilled automotive mechanics in the maintenance of hybrid technology engine. This is in line with the developing Electric Vehicle Road map for Malaysia (Kothandabhani, 2011). This initiative complies with the National Green Technology policy to promote the hybrid vehicle in the Malaysian automotive industry which will be dominated the market by 2015.

Other Issues

The development of the world talent in sustainable development requires a comprehensive and inclusive national effort from the public sector, private and society. During the Malaysian 10th Plan Period, the country will strive to adopt an integrated human capital and talent development framework. This approach will develop Malaysians throughout their entire cycle life, from early childhood education until their working adult lives.

To facilitate this, some of these issues are to be urgently addressed

  1. Raising the skills of Malaysian to increase the employability
    One of the strategies to raise the skills of the Malaysian graduate is to increase his/her access to the technical education and vocational training. The TVET provider must strive to increase the enrollement rate significantly and further achieve the improvement in the quality of training modules, facilities and personnel. In line with this, some of the strategies can be explored. Specifically, Malaysian TVET has to address the following concerns
    • Improvement in the perception of TVET to the general public
    • Attracting more skilled personnel as TVET trainers and developing their capabilities through the years.
    • Upgrading the present TVET curriculum quality aligned with the requirements of the industry requirement
    • Streamlining the delivery of TVET through the reduction of bureaucratic red tape and other challenges that hamper the fast delivery of services
  2. Reforming the labor market to transform Malaysia into high income country
    Reflecting on the present situation that shows a low level of Malaysians that have achieved higher educational qualification, there is a need to further create opportunities to upgrade the skills of the existing workforce and strive to empower them to further contribute into the health of the economy. The government targets to have 33% of the workforce employed in the higher skilled job bracket and up to 50% in 2020.
    The Recognition of prior learning (RPL) program must be extended to formally recognize experiences of the workers as well as encouraging life long learning among the workers.

Challenges in Implementing the Green Technology

Envisioning a country that invests heavily on green technology for a sustainable future has some challenges, particularly because the plans are currently in their initial stages of implementation. Some of the possible challenges are the following:

  1. Changing the mindset of the public;
    In order to change the mindset of the public the government has to provide initatives that will further raise awareness and promotion of the significance, benefits and contributions of adopting into green technology practices. It should also be started on the most basic phase of education until the tertiary level.
  2. Lack of knowledge and expertise
    Malaysia is dependent on other developed nations for their expertise in green technology. The country needs to enhance their expertise on green technology particularly: the capacity building in specific areas of concern, green technology as a solution to specified problems and economic driver and commercialization and development efforts targeting the needs of local inventors and innovators.
  3. Improving the value and supply chain
    One of the major challenges for green technology projects are the bottlenecks in the value and supply chains, resulting to the slow approval of funds for the development of the projects. The government can explore providing considerations to firms adopting green technology practices, as well as streamlined guidelines that will enable easier transactions.
  4. Coming up with feasible fiscal and financial GT development incentives
    The Government has started some basic and promotional fiscal and financial incentives to spur GT development. KeTTHA is in the midst of conducting 2 major studies to assess and identify the scope of fiscal incentives and financial assistance to scale up the development of the GT industry.
  5. Promoting more research and development efforts;
    KeTTHA plans to enhance Research, Development, Innovation and Commercialisation (RDIC) through:
    • financial grants or assistance
    • establishment of an effective coordinating agency for RDI and Center of Excellence or agency for RDI and Center of Excellence or new research institute for GT development.
    • smart partnership between the government, industries and research institutions
    • strong linkages between local research institutions and international centers of excellence in GT RDI.
  6. Crafting a comprehensive, viable and doable GT roadmap
    The Government should be able to craft a Green Technology Roadmap to guide Malaysia towards a low carbon economy focused on introducing sustainable operation practices on energy, wastewater, building, transportation, manufacturing and ICT.
  7. Duplication of tasks and jurisdictional implications;
    There is a need to encourage a greater form of collaboration among ministries, agencies, the private sector and all other stakeholders in implementing policies. There is a need to mitigate overlapping of tasks and jurisdictional implications amongst government stakeholders to facilitate an easier flow of transactions and minimize ineffectiveness and iefficiency.
  8. Increasing GT Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
    The business community should realize the crucial role it plays in facilitating social change and thus, should contribute substantially in the development efforts to enhance a community or locality. Currently, CSR activities are not implemented substantially, and concerns such as fund contribution and sustainability of operations after the project should be further enhanced.
  9. Gradual minimizing of government subsidies in energy and water sectors.
    Current energy subsidies and low water tariff which do not reflect cost of supply is counter productive to green technology efforts. The government should make the necessary steps to reduce government intervention (in the form of subsidies) in energy and water sectors and should push for marketdriven operations that is dependent on the level of supply and demand in the market.
  10. Political will
    The policies proposed by the different sectors would prove meaningless if there is no political and social will among the business leaders and politicians. They, of all people, should spearhead the necessary changes and should be open in adapting into current needs and requirements.

Conclusion

Malaysia has been very active in pursuing a sustainable future through the integration of sustainable development in its economic plans. Many policies, legislations and promotional activities have been put into place to foster green growth as an alternative economic growth engine for the nation. However, a lot has to be done by all parties concerned in spearheading the green technology initiatives and making sure that its effects are felt by all sectors of the society.

Strategic partnerships and collaborative efforts need to be explored, with main focus on the development of the human capital especially by the TVET stystem. The existence of properly skilled human capital is the main driver of instituting the green practices in all operations for the delivery of services and manufacturing activities. The trend should now go beyond conferences and meetings.

TVET needs to go out for multi-faceted adaptation of green initiatives i.e from policy focus to integrating into curricular programs and to the extent of model institutions as sample of best green practicing institution. The practice of focusing students’ creativity toward green solutions to community problems needs to reinforce. It has to be kept in mind also that winning the support of the Malaysian public is very crucial for the success of these initiatives, and the achievements will definitely cause a significant impact the standard of living of Malaysians and to the rest of the world as well.

TVET needs to strengthen efforts beyond what has been discussed in this paper. We need to define a model green TVET institutional management and should strive to cover the whole gamut of green practices in the industry and other economic spectrum of life through TVET training programs for skill development.

References

  1. Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification Commission (2014). Politeknik Ungku Omar Onsite Visit Report: February, 2014.
  2. Awang, M. et al (2013). “Transformation of Malaysian Polytechnics Inevitabilities Facilities Management Competencies”. Journal of Global Management. Volume 5. Number 1. p.2-20.
  3. Green Prospects Asia (2012). MyHIJAU Program. Retrieved on May 31, 2014 from http://www.greenprospectsasia.com
  4. International Labor Organization (2014). “Green Job Maping in Malaysias: An Overview Based on Initial Desk Research”. Retrieved on June 10, 2014 from: http://www.ilo.org/asia/whatwedo/publications/ WCMS_239640/lang-en/ index.htm.
  5. JPK, (29 July 2013). Daftar NOSS terkini. Retrieved from http://www.dsd. gov.my/index.php/ms/perkhidmatan3/perkhidmatan/noss.
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