Working in Malaysia

Hours, culture, working conditions

Working in Malaysia

The Malaysian Employment Act defines the work weeks as 48 hours, with a maximum of 8 working hours per day and 6 working days per week.

There are special restrictions, or rather protection provisions, for women in the industrial or agricultural sector. They are not permitted to work between the hours of 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

Malaysian workers are eligible for full-time employment at the age of 14. But there are certain protective regulations covering adolescents aged 14 to 16. The labour law in this case differs slightly in Peninsular Malaysia from that in Sabah and Sarawak. Under the age of 14 children are allowed to work as well but “only” six hours per day. The areas of work, are however highly limited to non-physical work.

Normal business hours In Malaysia are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays to Fridays, with many businesses and government agencies also open until noon on Saturdays.


The Malaysian Labour Law prescribes a minimum of 10 days of paid holidays in a year. This is not that much, however, there is barely another country which has as many religious holidays as Malaysia. Due to the different cultures and religions in Malaysia, and the freedom to live these out, there are Muslim as well as Buddhistic, Hindu and Christian holidays.

Further reading

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