Newsbites – more for fair employment, but more owe workers CPF money

Newsbites – more for fair employment, but more owe workers CPF money

Government to continue with economic restructuring through skills training, innovation
Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin indicated that the government will continue in its efforts to restructure the Singapore economy to achieve its vision of having “better workers, better jobs”. In his May day message, Mr Tan noted that skills upgrading was a key component of these efforts.
“We are embarking on a major review of the CET (Continuing Education and Training) system to support workers in upgrading their skills and lifelong learning, so that they can seize the new job opportunities that restructuring will bring. The Workfare Training Support Scheme will continue to support low-wage workers and older workers to enhance their employability,” he was reported as saying.
Mr Tan also stressed the importance of tripartism, and for companies to continue their efforts in innovation.
 
More employers to implement fair work practices
Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin indicated that more employers have committed adopting fair employment practices, and attributed this to progress made by the Tripartite Alliance for Fair and Progressive Employment Practices (TAFEP). Last year, 2,600 employers pledged to implement fair employment practices, compared to 200 in 2006. The number of participants who attended training workshops and seminars organised by TAFEP also grew to 5,752, compared to 2,725 in 2008. Mr Tan also noted that moral suasion will be key in encouraging such efforts by employers, although laws and regulations to ensure fair employment will remain in place.

 
S$420m CPF contributions recovered from errant employers
About S$420 million in Central Provident Fund (CPF) contributions owed to more than 250,000 workers was recovered from employers last year, a 43% increase since 2012. Cases of no payment or underpayment were more common in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the security, cleaning, and food and beverage industries. The CPF Board said it has increased its number of inspections from 500 to 5,000 each year, which was also noted as an attributing factor in increased in number of cases.
 
NMP renominations – one says yes, some say no
Associate Law Professor Eugene Tan was reported to have expressed interest in another term as Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP), after receiving encouragement from people around him. Of the other eight NMPs, four had reportedly announced they would not be seeking another term. They include National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre chief executive Laurence Lien, actress Janice Koh, executive secretary of the Singapore Maritime Officers’ Union Mary Liew, and managing director of Pacific Lines Teo Siong Seng.
 
Some ERP gantries to charge lower rates
Electronic road pricing (ERP) fees for the East Coast Parkway (ECP) going into the city in the morning will be reduced from May 5. The changes followed a quarterly review of traffic conditions by the Land Transport Authority.
 
New Attorney-General from June 2014
Judge of Appeal V. K. Rajah, 57, will take over as Attorney-General from Mr Steven Chong in June 2014. Mr Chong, a former High Court judge, will return to the Supreme Court after his two-year term as AG.
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