JOHOR BARU: The Johor state government, via Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA), today launched Iskandar Malaysia Employment Grant (IMEG) with an allocation of RM6 million.

Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, who made the announcement today, said IMEG aimed to help the targeted group get jobs in the economic zone.

"IMEG, which started as a pilot project last year, is not a training programme. Instead it offers matching grants to encourage job opportunities in seven targeted groups," he said.

Mohamed Khaled, who is also Joint IRDA Chairman, said this to reporters after officiating the Iskandar Malaysia Open Day in Komtar JBCC here today.

He said about 86 companies had agreed to cooperate with IRDA under IMEG to offer 1,900 jobs.

He said the groups expected to benefit were the graduates who were still jobless, laid-off workers, workers with limited skills, women, handicapped, retirees and others.

"Under the scheme the state government will defray about 50 per cent of the worker's salary for six months, with the maximum grant of up to RM2,500 each worker taken in by the employer," he said.

He said the state government would also give one-off training grant for the worker to upgrade his skills in the industry," he said. — Bernama