KUALA LUMPUR: The Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE) will offer loans for final year students to participate in the professional certification programmes next year, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.

Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin said the government has provided a fund amounting to RM15 million for this purpose.

“This is to boost the level of graduate marketability,“ he said when winding up debate on the Supply Bill 2024 at the committee stage for the ministry in the house.

Based on the official data of the Graduates Tracer Study, he said a total of 29,000 graduates have not landed a job six months after graduating in 2022.

However, he said the unemployment rate of graduates has decreased to 3.7 per cent in 2022 compared to 4.1 per cent in 2021.

Meanwhile, Mohamed Khaled said the ministry has identified several strategies including continuous research investment in determining the excellence of local universities so as not to rely solely on international rankings.

The Dewan Rakyat then approved the estimated operating and development expenditures amounting to RM16,339,467,900 allocated to the MOHE in the 2024 Budget.

The sitting continues tomorrow.–Bernama

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