JOHOR BARU: Iskandar Malaysia is a magnet for professionals nationwide who are migrating to the area to become part of its rapid development.

Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) vice president of business ecosystem Prakash Nagarajan said professionals from Kuala Lumpur are leading the charge for Iskandar Malaysia.

He said the mass movement towards the region is largely due to the availability of more and lucrative job opportunities in Iskandar.

"The difference in salary offered for the same job at the professional level in Kuala Lumpur and Iskandar Malaysia has been reduced. In fact, it is becoming more equal.

"We may not be able to compete with Singapore in terms of attracting talent from Johor, but IRDA has its strategies and is providing opportunities to people from all over the country to come and work here," said Prakash.

He was speaking to the media after attending a signing ceremony for a cooperation agreement between IRDA and Crescendo International College (CIC).

The agreement was signed by Prakash (who was representing IRDA) and CIC chief executive Fang Kiam Hui.

Prakash said IRDA will continue to cooperate with more institutes of higher learning in its efforts to realise the Iskandar Malaysia Professional Certificate (IMPC) programme, through an allocation under the Iskandar Malaysia Professional Fund (IMProF).

Fang said the initiative being conducted under the IMPC is aimed at producing more professional accountants through CIC's Future Accounting Professionals (FAP) programme.

"The FAP programme is innovative. It provides opportunities for school leavers who (cannot afford to pay for their studies) to become certified accountants," he added.

Source: New Straits Times