Amid its controversial work permit moratorium, the Sarawak government announced today it will review the 586 positions currently occupied by non-locals in oil and gas giant Petronas.
Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said a sub-committee will be formed to ensure that Sarawakians will be given priority to be employed by the firm.
“A subcommittee, headed by State Secretary Tan Sri Morshidi Ghani will review the issuance of the work permits to these non-locals and some applications from non-locals which are being frozen,” he told reporters at the Hornbill Skyways Hangar here upon returning from the federal capital.
Adenan confirmed that the issue of non-locals working with Petronas in Sarawak was one of the points discussed with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Petronas chief executive officer Datuk Wan Zulkfili Wan Ariffin in Putrajaya yesterday.
He said that 192 vacant posts in Petronas are to be advertised in local papers and to be filled by Sarawakians.
“Petronas is to consult the state government if no Sarawakian is suitable for the job,” he said.
The deployment of non-locals to work in the Petronas Sarawak operations was a subject of complaints by the Suarah Petroleum Group (SPG), a state-sponsored think tank, early this month after 29 positions were abolished and 13 local senior staff retrenched.
SPG also complained that local employees are being replaced by Malaysians from outside the state.
Following the complaints, the state government froze applications for work permits from non-local Malaysians to work in Sarawak operations.
The state government also formed a committee, headed by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, to hold discussions with the oil company.
Adenan said Petronas will also provide up to 50 places for Sarawakians to do an undergraduate studies at University Technology Petronas.
He said Petronas also agreed to intensify technical training for Sarawakians and enrol more Saerawakians in their training centres throughout the country.
Petronas, together with Putrajaya, will also consider the intention of the state government to participate in the Production Sharing Contracts so that the state can benefit from such contracts.
“We also reached amicable agreements with that the Sarawak State Secretary will represent Sarawak as a board member of Petronas directors,” he said.