We need skilled workers to compete with high-income Asian nations like Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and Singapore.
He said since about 3.3 million new jobs would be created under the Economic Transformation Programme (of which 60% would be in the high-skill category), there was an urgent need for skilled workers.
"Unfortunately, of the 9.8 million total workforce in the country, only 28% are employed in high-skilled jobs. Achieving the status of a developed nation requires the support of highly skilled and a competent workforce," he was quoted as saying in that report.
Dr Subramaniam said as an incentive for employers to send their employees for training under the 1Malaysia Training programme, the Government would reimburse 20% of the course fee into employers' levy accounts after completion of their training.
He said the Government had allocated RM500mil for upgrading skills of workers under the 10th Malaysia Plan (2011-2015).
On the same note, he said the National Minimum Wage Consultative Council Act would be tabled at the next Dewan Rakyat sitting.
The council would be able to coordinate the salary of workers in the private sector once the Act comes into force.