Archive for category Brain drain

Fleeing talent would stay for family, survey finds

By Yow Hong Chieh | June 20, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, June 20 — Only one in 50 Malaysians seeking greener pastures overseas will consider staying to contribute to national interest, a Jobstreet survey has shown.

Half of those who intend to go abroad — who made up 87 per cent of those surveyed — told the recruitment company they were, however, willing to remain here for family.

The Jobstreet poll also confirmed that higher pay (42 per cent), better career prospects (24 per cent) and children’s education (13 per cent) were the primary reasons for Malaysia’s ongoing brain drain.

Other respondents said they wished to explore travel opportunities (nine per cent) and follow their spouses (three per cent).
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Anak Malaysia 2

By M. Chua
June 18, 2011 | MalaysiaKini

JUNE 18 — Someone sent me an article by Kalimullah Hassan, which appeared in The Malaysian Insider last week.

The article was on his experiences in trying to be an “Anak Malaysia” and I found the subject to be interesting, especially for me, an Anak Malaysia currently living abroad.

I must confess I hardly read Malaysian newspapers these days and not even The Malaysia Insider or any other publication or news portal. Frankly, most news coming out of my homeland does not exactly fill me with joy. Read the rest of this entry »

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Economic Development Reverses Brain Drain

By M. Bakri Musa

A recent World Bank Report concludes that Malaysia risks jeopardizing its economic development if it does not ameliorate its “brain drain” problem. The Bank singles out the country’s affirmative action program as a major contributor to the problem.

Brain drain, as the Bank rightly acknowledges, is a universal problem. For the Bank to conclude as it did, it must present comparative international data showing that Malaysia’s problem is worse off than those without similar affirmative action programs. Alas, this is precisely the glaring deficiency of the report, its lack of comparative data.

The Report nonetheless contains a wealth of valuable data. However, as the information sage Edward Tufte observed, nature’s laws are causal; they reveal themselves by comparison and difference. This absence of comparisons makes the report’s conclusion not credible.
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A place that values me

By PM Wong
Jun 11, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 11 — We cannot choose where we are born but we can certainly choose where we live. My father was born in Guangdong province and migrated to Malaya with his family when he was six. I grew up in Kuala Lumpur, studied and worked in New York for many years before moving to Hong Kong 18 years ago.

Hong Kong is now my adopted home because I enjoy living here. More importantly, it is a place where I believe I can best contribute to creating a better world.
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No regrets

By Hirobella
June 11, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 11 — I have been following closely articles written by like-minded people like me who chose to leave Malaysia and others who chose to stay. For those who have chosen to leave or about to leave the country, someone like me can easily identify with their choice. After all I made the same decision over 20 years ago to come to Australia with my wife and one-year-old daughter. Read the rest of this entry »


Showing we really ‘boleh’

By Chris Yip
June 09, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 9 — I’m an automotive engineering student currently studying in England. I was born and raised in Selangor for a solid 20 years before leaving Malaysia to study abroad.

Many would say only the rich are able to afford an education in the UK, but I would tell you otherwise, or maybe in this case I’m the odd one out.

I come from a family of six whose sole breadwinner is my father, and he doesn’t earn a five-figure salary and has been retrenched more times than I can remember. I have a diploma from a technical college that does one too many advertisements around the country (NOT cheap to study there at all) but I managed to score a scholarship from them.

Since my parents know very well that education is the base of a person’s career, they made sure I was going to continue studying for a degree even if they had to survive on bread and water. Seeing that my interest and brains were victims to the automotive industry, and there was nowhere I could go to further my studies in Malaysia, it left me no choice but to study abroad. Read the rest of this entry »


Why I’m Returning Home to Malaysia

By Idzwan Husaini
8 June, 2011 | LoyarBurok

While The Malaysian Insider asks readers to reveal why people choose to leave or stay in the country, Idzwan Husaini, a medical undergraduate shares why he is coming back to stay in the country. Hopefully in the near future.

I have been studying in the United Kingdom for almost three years now and I have enjoyed the enormous sense of freedom, liberty and equality that is widespread in this country.

Freedom of expression is celebrated here. Rather than oppressing the movement or suppressing the voice of the minority, they are given a chance to prove to the majority their abilities and worth. I was surprised to see an entire family of grandparents, parents and little children joining the throng of people watching the parade during the London Gay Pride summer last year. Rather than teaching their kids to hate people who have, and are proud of their differing sexualities, the parents chose to expose their children to a completely different lifestyle so they can later choose what is best for them in the future. Freedom of expression is allowed to take place in all forms and shapes. I do not remember ever hearing any agencies involved in banning books, films, songs or even cartoons for that matter! Read the rest of this entry »


Because the nasi lemak rocks

By C. Choong
June 08, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

Negaraku, tanah tumpahnya darahku,
Rakyat hidup, bersatu dan maju,
Rahmat Bahagia, Tuhan kurniakan,
Raja kita, selamat bertakhta.
Rahmat Bahagia, Tuhan kurniakan,
Raja kita, selamat bertakhta.

It’s been almost 14 years since I’ve sung the national anthem. Fourteen. Guess that’s what happens when you’re shipped off to an international school system. All I remember about it though is the fact that half the school would get the lyrics wrong (kurnia……SANNNNNNN), and the other half would get it correct because we just spent the last music class being corrected about it. One half would try to outdo the other in emphasising the fact it was KAN… so the poor song was obviously butchered in the process of all this. Read the rest of this entry »


Purpose, meaning, choice

By Jerome Martin
June 08, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 8 — Nobody should feel obliged to stay or leave, wherever one might be.

Be it your birthplace, country of residence or somewhere you’re just passing through, no one should be compelled to be someplace s/he’d rather not be.

Which is why this entire business of our government begging Malaysians around the world to return disturbs me. You can ask someone to loan you 50 bucks as a favour. You can’t ask them to uproot, change their life plans and come home just to render some kind of “national service.” Read the rest of this entry »


DAP insists on overseas scholarships for all SPM aces

By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal
June 07, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, June 7- All SPM top scorers should get overseas Public Service Department (PSD) scholarships instead of 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) grants if Malaysia wants to retain the country’s human talent, DAP has said.

Putrajaya announced yesterday that 500 special education grants would be disbursed by 1MDB to rejected applicants to study locally. The categories (annual): Scholarships to public universities (RM7,500), scholarships for critical courses in private universities (RM15,000), and grants for non-critical courses (RM7,500). Read the rest of this entry »


We who left should not be seen as such

By Zewt
June 06, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 6 — Migration and the brain drain phenomenon seem to be the talk of the town at the moment. And when I read the comments on various articles here, I observe that people like me are being labelled in a certain manner.

Yes, I am one of those who left to ply my trade elsewhere. I don’t consider myself a migrant, though I would not rule out this possibility entirely.

“Unpatriotic” is probably the most common label — I wouldn’t want to deny this. Not that I agree with it, just that it is a never-ending argument.

“Greedy and selfish” is probably another thing we are called. Again — not that I agree, but I do not want to debate on this for now. And there are many more…

However, there is one label that I cannot accept, when we are called “cowards who took the easy way out” because we refused to stay and “fight.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Why I joined the Malaysian diaspora

by LHC
June 06, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 6 — I was born to parents who were themselves born, and lived their entire lives, in Malaysia. Yet, solely due to the colour of my skin, I was called a “pendatang” (immigrant) by the Malaysian government, whereas someone who hails directly from Indonesia would be welcomed as a “Bumiputera” (“prince of the soil”) and be accorded the unfair privileges that came with that title.

I was, however, more fortunate than many of my other non-Bumiputera compatriots, because my parents were middle-class professionals who could afford to send me overseas to further my education. I obtained my medical degree from the British Isles, following which I was faced with the decision either to return to Malaysia, or continue my stint overseas. Read the rest of this entry »


Spirit of adventure

By A. Razak
June 06, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 6 — I left Malaysia many years ago in the spirit of adventure. I went simply because the idea of doing something new in unfamiliar territory sounded like a lot of fun. I have now lived in the UK for 10 years.

Here in the UK we live a life of “relative isolation.” My wife is the third of seven siblings while I am second of five. My kids are two of 11 grandchildren. When you include uncles, aunties and family friends, life becomes a circus of birthdays, weddings and family functions. When you live thousands of miles away from your relatives, weekends are exclusively for your precious little family. Read the rest of this entry »


Don’t turn talent outflow into brain drain

By Lim Mun Fah
June 04, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 4 — The world is fighting for talents. We can hardly find another country having a messy overseas scholarship system and yet blames the media for causing chaos, like Malaysia.

I have a book entitled “The Talent War” on my bookshelf. It wrote: “Talent outflow in European countries has made the United States the first country to successfully detonate atomic and hydrogen bombs, as well as send satellites into space and astronauts to land on the moon. Meanwhile, talent outflow in China and India has created Silicon Valley, a home to many of the world’s largest technology corporations, in the US. Talents are more important to a country compared to oil, financial streets and nuclear weapons.” Read the rest of this entry »


Brain drain and migration, so who’s left to save Malaysia?

By Yee Ziherng | June 02, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

JUNE 2 — My name is Yee Ziherng and I am a Malaysian. I stand firmly on the ground that I am a Malaysian first, Chinese second. So there are no debatable issues about races and religion here.

I have been gravely disheartened by the recent deluge of stories of Malaysians migrating. More and more people are jumping on the bandwagon of supporting the move while enumerating lists of alleged flaws and problems facing those who choose to remain, all the while without providing viable solutions to the problem.
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A twist of fate…

By Kedah man in Japan | May 30, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

MAY 30 — Like AC who penned “First love, long lost”, life just happened and before I knew it, I found myself enjoying life outside of Malaysia.

I am but a padi farmer’s son. I was working in a construction site after obtaining three Ds and one O for my Higher School Certificate in 1979. One day, my older brother handed me an advertisement by Singapore Airlines calling for pilot trainees. Fate had it that it was the last day for the application. It was a Friday and the post offices in Kedah were closed. My nephew drove me all the way from my village to Butterworth on a 100cc motorbike just to post the application letter. I can still recall how my buttocks hurt.
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MCA’s failure in scholarship row may hasten brain drain, says DAP

By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal | June 02, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, June 2 — The MCA’s failure to obtain overseas scholarships for 86 SPM top scorers may further hasten the brain drain of young talents, the DAP has charged.

DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said that the party was “disappointed” with the Cabinet’s decision that the top scorers would only receive scholarships to study in local private colleges and universities despite MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lok’s recent statements that it would push for overseas scholarships to be awarded to these students.
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A dream of Malaysian unity

The Malaysian Insider
Jun 01, 2011

MAY 31 — I have read with sadness the many letters you have published regarding Malaysia’s brain drain. I am one of those, who left Malaysia for many reasons, chiefly, because I did not see any future for my children in a country which had become increasingly racist, moving from moderate to fundamentalist Islamic and also increasingly intolerant.

To those who say that I am unpatriotic and that I should stay on to help change the country, I tell you that it cannot be changed! Whilst working as a professional in Malaysia, I also served for 14 years in the Territorial Army of Malaysia (Rejimen Askar Wataniah), rising to my last rank of Major.

Rejimen Askar Wataniah is the army reserves of Malaysia and we undergo weekend military training every fortnight. During those years, not only was I prepared to risk life and limb for King and country, but I also initiated and helped set up Askar Wataniah societies in mainly Chinese tertiary institutes which recruited Chinese students into the Askar Wataniah. Every year, those societies recruited some 100+ Chinese students into the Rejimen Askar Wataniah, compared with a miserly 10+ in the regular army.

I expected nothing from my efforts because I enjoyed my time in the Askar Wataniah and I was patriotic, then! But I certainly did not expect brickbats and every effort being made by my fellow Malay officers to run me down because they were jealous (my efforts in recruiting such large numbers of Chinese into the Askar Wataniah had caught the attention of the military top brass and also assorted politicians, in particular MCA politicians) or as one of them told me, “perasaan dengki” which Malays always seem to have for those who are more successful than they are. Read the rest of this entry »


Something to ponder before migrating

From a doctor who stayed
The Malaysian Insider
Jun 01, 2011

JUNE 1 — It has been illuminating reading the various stories of the people who left and the people who stayed. I personally feel it is the individual’s choice and I agree largely with the opinions of John Rahman. However, I do want to share a couple of angles from a physician’s perspective.

1. To all those who have migrated whose parents are still alive, please make provisions for them if they are left behind. Most people write about the opportunities they need to give to their children but rarely mention what happens to their parents when they migrate.

As a doctor, I see this every day. There are many elderly patients who are admitted to hospital and their children are all living abroad. It is very sad. Read the rest of this entry »


A fight for Malaysia

Dr Kamal Amzan
The Malaysian Insider
Jun 01, 2011

JUNE 1 — The country of nasi lemak, rendang, pasembor, rojak and yong tau hu.

A nation of colourful festivals and public holidays that dot the yearly planner, turning any calendar into a polka-dot collage.

It is where you find everyone is related. We are somebody’s “uncles”, “aunties”, “pak ciks” and “mak ciks”, akin to a super big family celebrating our differences in fashionably colourful ways.

A country blessed with pristine, tranquil mountaintops, sandy white beaches and whatever remains of our rich rainforest heritage everywhere.

A place where the east converges before greeting the west.

This is my country. My home, my heaven and my paradise. Read the rest of this entry »