JOHOR BARU - Lifting the country to developed status by 2020 through Government Trans-formation Programmes (GTPs) will require a workforce that is highly trained and skilled.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said 80% of the country's workforce currently comprised those with SPM-level qualifications.
"We need to train these people at community colleges to equip them with new skills.
"The country needs people who are innovative and can think outside the box," he said at a dialogue session with Universiti Teknologi Malaysia students here yesterday.
Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister, also launched the UTM-Malaysian Technology Development Corporation (MTDC) technology centre.
Muhyiddin said there were a lot of opportunities in the country, adding that the Govern-ment had a plan to turn Malaysia into a developed country by 2020.
"Our economy has expanded and all sub-sectors need people.
"With a highly trained workforce, we do not need to import people from abroad," he said and gave details of the GTPs, the National Key Result Areas (NKRAs) and the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
"All this will help the country to compete internationally," he said, adding that many countries that were formerly colonised had regressed due to poverty and conflict.
At another function, Muhyiddin reiterated that the Malays should stay united in trying times and be able to "stand on your own feet."
He also warned them against leaders who tried to influence others with their dangerous ideologies, saying these so-called leaders were enemies of their own community.
He cited a recent call by PAS that a vote for the party would guarantee pahala for the voter.
"Such a statement is misleading and dangerous," Muhyiddin told a gathering of Malay non-governmental organisations at the Zone Hotel here yesterday.