Rural Development Challenges in Malaysia

In essence, rural development is a process and is very much outcome based.  It is a process of deliberate induced change led by the state and is multidisciplinary and the outcome is for the betterment of the rural population, for example, improved quality of life, increased income and  productivity, reduced poverty, better infrastructure, health, education etc.  In 1970 the rural population accounts for about 73 % of total population and steadily declined to 38% in 2000, 25.7 % in 2015 and is anticipated to decline further to 22.8 % in 2020 and 20.4 % 9n 2025.  Average gross monthly household income of the rural population is less than half of the urban population.  The continued decline of the rural population has given rise to issues of out-migration, aging, shortage of labour, social problems especially drug abuse, land fragmentation, lack of employment amongst youth, dependency on government etc.