By Leong Sze Hian
The article by Straits Times, “Reflecting on 2016” (29 Dec), states that “December may just be a routine month in the calendar for some, but for others, the end of the year is a time for reflection, contemplation and New Year resolutions. We celebrate milestones, remember relationships lost and found, think about mistakes made”.
The Top 10 Jobs “Statistics” of 2016?
- Security guards: Basic pay up 38%, but gross pay up 8%?
- Retrenched workers hit a 7-year high
- Long Term Unemployed (LTU) Share – at 30.3 per cent is at a 10- year high*
- Degree holders formed the highest proportion by education of the long-term unemployed*
- Age 50 and over formed the highest proportion by age of the long-term unemployed*
- Ratio of job vacancies to unemployed at 10-year low
- Not offering re-employment – compensation increased to $5,500 – $13,000
- Hawker centre cleaners’ median basic wage target of $1,200 by June 2015 announced in 2012 not achieved – deferred to 2019
- Hawker centre cleaners’ basic and gross median wage is only $1,000 and $1,100, respectively
- No minimum wage in Singapore – still as low as $5 an hour
(*refer to charts below article)
“Manpower issues biggest obstacle for local firms”
Looking at the above – is it any wonder that according to a Singapore Business Federation survey released yesterday stated that in the midst of the tepid economic climate, operating costs (68%) and manpower issues (66%) remain the biggest challenges for businesses.
Key manpower issues as said to be faced by companies are rising labour costs, manpower rules and regulations, as well as attracting and retaining younger workers.
Only 28% of businesses have expressed satisfaction with the current policies.
This is lower among Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs), where 27% have expressed satisfaction, compared to 39% among large companies. Most companies have chosen to remain neutral.
Breaking point of years of liberal foreign labour policies?
Have we reached arguably, in a sense – the breaking point of out liberal foreign labour policies over the years, which may have contributed to our labour woes today for Singaporean workers as well as businesses?
Not to mention our economic woes – 1.4 per cent forecast GDP growth for 2016!
Happy New Year