These young men from Nepal bite the bullet for a few years, working for low wages in Penang. They do it in the hope that their future will be greatly improved. For each of them though, the dependence on Penang and Malaysia is temporary. But for Penang and Malaysia, the dependence on them is practically permanent.
Penang, filled with factories on the island and in Seberang Prai on the mainland, has an unquenchable thirst for workers, both skilled and unskilled.
Opinions differ as to how this demand cannot be met by local workers. Are locals too choosy; are too many of them leaving the state, thus exacerbating the deficiency; are the jobs too demeaning; are they too lazy; or are the wages simply too low?
The absence of minimum wage legislature in Malaysia certainly does encourage the import of foreign unskilled labour in practically all labourintensive industries.
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