Recently, a Malaysian did the math to demonstrate how an average person's salary has not kept up with the rising cost of living in over 40 years
Facebook user Ir Abdul Rahman took to his account to share that his calculations prove it is not possible to afford the current cost of living on a monthly salary of RM3,000.
Abdul, who has a Masters in Engineering, often takes to Facebook to share his insights about the insufficient monthly wages that people are earning in Malaysia.
In his most recent post, he wrote that he overheard a group of pensioners questioning young people who complain about their pay
According to Abdul, he heard an uncle say, "I'm puzzled why the young people nowadays complain even though they have a salary of RM3,000. In the 80s, I had a salary of RM1,500 and I survived."
"I got to buy a house and drive a Honda. I also got to eat McDonald's. The young people of today are too spoiled."
Abdul wrote that it hurt his heart to hear such words but it also made him wonder why his generation struggles to survive while being called "spoiled".
He then decided to compare the cost of living and salary of an average person from the 80s to that of today
In "a letter for pak cik", Abdul compared an average employee's monthly salary and the prices of a terrace house, Honda Civic, and a double cheeseburger in the 80s and 2020.
In the 1980s
Salary: RM1,500 per month
One-storey terrace house: RM25,000 (outside of Kuala Lumpur)
Honda Civic: RM13,000
Double cheeseburger: RM2.95
Salary: RM3,000 per month
One-storey terrace house: RM280,000 (outside of Kuala Lumpur)
Honda Civic: RM108,000
Double cheeseburger: RM9.45
In his post, Abdul points out that the cost of a house, car, and burger have multiplied over the years but our salaries have only doubled
This is how much they have multiplied:
Salary: Increased by two times
One-storey terrace house: Increased by 11 times
Honda Civic: Increased by 8.3 times
Double cheeseburger: Increased by 3.2 times
"Yes, it looks great, that salary has doubled. But that also means that if we would like to buy a one-storey terrace house outside of Kuala Lumpur, we would need to work 11 times harder than people working in the 80s," Abdul emphasised.
"If we want to buy a Honda Civic, we would need to work 8.3 times harder. And for a double cheeseburger, we would have to work 3.2 times harder than those working in the 80s."
"Since we still work the same eight hours today in 2020 as in the 80s, does that also mean that we have to work 88 hours a day, just so we can buy a one-storey terrace house?" he questioned.
"Or work 66.4 hours a day so we can buy a Honda Civic? 25.6 hours a day to eat a double cheeseburger?"
"It seems impossible, Uncle. Everyone only has 24 hours in a day."
"So what is the real issue? Is my generation spoiled or is our purchasing power just weak?"
His post has since gone viral and been shared over 9,000 times
This Facebook user commented, "I guess everything he's written up there is right. But all that can't change our fate if we ourselves don't. Want to or not, we have to work hard to survive."
"I'm 27 and worked for two and a half years but I am earning a basic RM1,200," this Twitter user commented.
Meanwhile, another user commented that Abdul's math was not exactly correct.
"If you want a terrace house, and need to work 88 hours because eight hours multiplied by 11 is 88? Your salary has already been doubled, so that amount should be divided by two into 44 hours. Dear readers, please think when you read the numbers, do they make sense?"
But the user still agreed that salary has not caught up with inflation in the country.
Meanwhile, a recent survey has found that Malaysian employees are the least satisfied with their salaries: