Anwar Says Civil Servants' Salaries Will Increase By More Than 13%

The prime minister said that it is one of the biggest pay hikes in history.

Cover image via Asyraf Hamzah/Berita Harian

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Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has announced a salary increase of over 13% for civil servants, effective 1 December this year

"This increase will cost the government more than RM10 billion. The amount is big, and this is a decent increase, and among the best in history," Anwar said in his Labour Day speech yesterday, 1 May.

He also announced that the overall minimum pay for civil servants to exceed RM2,000.

"Currently, the overall minimum pay [for civil servants], including their salary and fixed allowance, is RM1,795 per month. I agree that this is unreasonable. Under the Public Service Remuneration System (SSPA), the government will increase salaries to ensure that the minimum pay for civil servants will exceed RM2,000 per month," added Anwar, who is also the Finance Minister.

Anwar also said that the Sabah and Sarawak state governments have agreed to amend their ordinances to align with the Employment Act 1955, which applies in Peninsular Malaysia.

The salary increase seeks to acknowledge civil servants' contributions, reduce the income gap between low and high earners, and assist with the rising cost of living amid the weakening ringgit.

The prime minister also urged the private sector to follow the government's lead by giving their employees reasonable pay raises

"Some companies make a lot of money, but where does this huge profit come from? From [the workers'] productivity. Give some of it [to the workers]. If the company makes hundreds of millions in profit, give a few hundred to the workers," he said, adding that workers must be treated with dignity and not like "semi-slaves".

"Because of unbridled capitalism, there are companies that care only about their profits and not about humanity or the environment. Workers are being oppressed and treated like semi-slaves. That is why [Labour Day] is important. It is a day when employees fight for their rights, and it has led to the establishment of trade unions that serve as effective advocates for workers' rights.

"If you talk about the Madani concept, you are talking about courtesy and humanity. We believe that everyone, whether cleaners clerks, or cooks, is equally important for generating economic growth," he said.

Watch Anwar's speech here:

Meanwhile, Human Resources Minister Steven Sim said the prime minister's announcement should not be a subject of debate

According to Sim, the government values all workers in the country.

"These civil servants are frontline workers. If we want to boost our country's economy to create better job opportunities, then we need civil servants who have higher productivity and efficiency.

"Therefore, with the appreciation given to civil servants, I believe it will motivate them to continue carrying out their duties to collectively develop the country's economy," he said, as reported by FMT.

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