Saturday, July 17, 2010

Filipinos celebrate job creation in Singapore

Here is the video link.

"It's a good result and we should be happy..." - PM Lee on the 15% economic growth this year[Link].

"I'd imagine there will be more than 100,000 extra foreign workers this year. I cannot see it otherwise, but we have to accept that" - PM Lee [

"Higher growth not higher wages yet..." - Straits Times 15 Jul 2010[Link]

Singaporeans want good economic growth so that they can get higher wages and better job opportunities. In recent years, economic growth produced little of these benefits for Singaporeans. Real wages grew by only 1.4 per cent per annum from 2001 to 2009, according to the Ministry of Manpower’s Labour Market Q1 2010 report. Going forward the govt aims to raise median income from $2400 to $3100 in 2020. This is roughly 2.5% per annum. Job opportunities for Singaporeans especially those above 40 have not improved as structural unemployment remains a problem in Singapore. In the past, before we imported foreign workers by the hundreds of thousands, when the economy grew, the labor market would tightened up and older workers would get reasonably good job opportunities. Not true for today's economy....PM Lee said the rapid growth means 100,000 more foreign workers will be brought in ...and this also means older Singaporean workers who are unemployed or under-employer will see little improvement in employment opportunities because employers can employ younger foreign workers given the floodgates are open. The video link I put up shows the excitement in Philippines generated by Singapore's rapid growth which represents improve job opportunities for filipinos. I do not begrudge the individuals from Philippines who take up these job opportunities - they have families to feed and many are hardworking individuals looking for a better life for themselves. However, Singapore is a nation not a corporation and the success of govt policy has to be measured in terms of how much it benefits ordinary Singaporeans.

No Singaporean I met has been particularly happy about the high economic growth except one guy who is waiting to sell his HDB for a high price so that he can move to Australia. We have become familiar with the effects of high economic growth - rising cost of living relative to wages, overcrowding of public transport, increase competition for housing and cars, higher stress levels etc. The high economic growth leads to a lower quality of life for many Singaporeans and PM Lee's remark that 100,000 extra foreign workers has brought about widespread dismay among ordinary Singaporeans who believed that his govt was sincere about moderating the number of FTs.

The PAP govt with the network big businesses to which it is linked has formulated policies that are unbalanced with benefits going to a small segment of the population. These policies have exacerbated the effects of our income gap which is the largest among developed nations and life for many Singaporeans has worsened year after year in the past 2 decades.


Anonymous said...

The best thing for the PAP about all this is that the opposition still remains weak and divided, with 50% walkovers by PAP at the next elections still a high possibility, let alone forming forming the next govt.

And somehow they can always managed to make 60% or more happy, whatever the circumstance.

And the minority who are not happy do not dare to openly protest, except through blogs.

And don't forget, those who criticise PAP strongly on the Internet may not necessarily be unhappy, but do for the fun of it. Just like the massive crowds at past opposition rallies compared to PAP ones doesn't mean they support PAP as the final results had shown and which is what really mattered.

Anonymous said...

Correction to above:

"...does not mean they support opposition..."

Anonymous said...

Let's take a look at the nursing world. Disclaimer: Below is a generalisation, not specific to individuals nor do ALL foreign individuals behave similarly. However, the trend is there.

Filipinos (or whatever other regional passport-holders, e.g. Indians, Burmese, China Chinese) celebrate before they arrive. When they arrive and find out that their pay is less than other passport-holders (e.g. Singapore citizens or Malaysians) for doing the same job, they will start to idle whenever the bosses are not around. Of these, the Filipinos and Indians are the most smart-ass to always butter-up the bosses asses and look busy when bosses are around, so that they can earn good feedback. In addition, they (especially Filipinos) also gang-up to bully and sabotage the locals, in an ugly psychological "revenge" to "exact some balance" to their unhappiness.

Anyway, those with passable English will soon plan their exit to other 1st world nations where the pay is better. Afterall, when these foreigners are treated as digits, they will not treat Singapore as home. Real 1st world countries has anti-discrimination rules and proper labour unions, and thus pay-discrimination based on passport would land the employer in hot-soup.

No pain to the Singapore government, of course, just import more fresh blood to replace the bleeding ones. But the Singapore citizens receiving healthcare here will lament the low quality of care here.

Migrant said...

"...does not mean they support opposition..."

Yeah, time to do away with GRCs

Anonymous said...

Me resides in the Eastern Part of SIN and patronises many of the markets, hawkers centres and coffeeshops from Still Road to Changi Village. Me noticed three hawkers centres that me visits frequently at Beok North, Bedok South and Tampines have recently seemed much quieter. Even favourites stalls with long queues in the past are experiencing falling businesses.

As a regular, me had opportunities to kaypoh a little to seek an explanation and to confirm my observation of falling business. Almost all were not able to pinpoint the reasons and causes though some did believe that consumers have much less (money) to spend and are self-imposing austerity measures.

Contrasting the actual market situation with the declared and claimed economic achievements and progresses of around 15%, somehow, somewhere there is mismatch or lack of cogency. The market situation is observable, fellow Singaporeans may like to post situations around their vicinities here for us to share.

Statistics on the other hand had been suspected to have been plucked from the air, created by educated rascals/crooks, cooked or massaged by shenanigans which resulted in 'there's statistics, damn statistics and lies'.

What i observed is alarming; especially at Blk 216 Bedok North Hawker Centre and Market. Me believes that many of the stall operators are definitely facing problems and losses. As for the Market there, many non-fresh produce stalls are closed(Ceased operation).



jamesneo said...

Hi patriot, the statistics could have been massaged a little but the impressive GDP could have been amassed by only a select few GLCs and MNCs in singapore while the situation for the majority of the SMEs have not improved significantly. One should always remember the that the SME employed up to 60-70% of the workforce in singapore. This is similar to the US where the big business can still report tremendous profit but their small business are failing like crazy.

I am pessimistic about the future since US has reentered recession again from all the economics indicators:

Although i think capital flow to asia might increase but in the short run over the next three years the situation can turn dire quickly. I will not be surprised if the GDP numbers start to show dramatic slow down from next year since we always lag the US by 2-3 quarters.

Anonymous said...

Just as Singaporean were complaining the jam-packed MRT trains our beloved leader announced an additional 100,000 foreigners. Isn't this a slap in the face ?

Anonymous said...

He is informing us that he will increase the number of foreign talent. His growth at all cost theory is coming back. The disapproval signal is clear but he choose to ignore because he knew that he will definately win the election.
He is not concerned about people, many office workers like me are now working 10 over hours for an 8hrs salary. Some even work 7 days a week because there is just too much work. There is no life in Singapore. This is because of him.

Anonymous said...

Hi James Neo;

Me fully concurs with your analysis.

Dire it will be, there are many signs and omens of it coming. Just the weather alone, me thinks could wreak much havocs and damages. Infrastructure developments have aggravated the situations and ironically it is infrastructures, their owners and their tenants that will have to bear the brunt of the damages.

There are also the vice industries that will wreck the society soon.
With another 100,000 or more foreigners on this tiny dot, it may sink without flood or blood.

Thank You much for the interaction.


Towkay said...

Singaporeans who believe that the government will regulate the import of cheap foreign workers have absolutely no idea how Singapore works.

Let me, the Towkay give you the basics:

1. Profiting Elites and Towkays is the only priority.

2. Cheaper foreign workers can do the job, so why hire Singaporeans? Why? Why? Why? Nobody has given me a good answer to this because they know there is no reason to hire more expensive Singaporeans.

3. Singaporeans only matter when we need you to work for free i.e. free security quards (NSmen), free volunteers for YOG, etc. Again refer to point 1, we earn more if we can get Singaporeans to work for free.

Anonymous said...

15% economic growth does not benefit me at all.

I am a civil servant, and my pay will not rise by 10% because of the boom. I don't expect 5 months bonus or even a GDP-related bonus. That's strictly reserved for the top of the top, the best of the best, and not for mere mortals like us.

Cost of living is increasing. The cost of food in our office canteen has increased by 20%. Rent is up, so is cost of food.

Big freaking deal about having the best economic growth when none of us get to share in it.

I also hate it when Filipinoes (or Burmese or PRC or M'sian) become HR personnel. Instead of hiring Singaporeans or the best candidate for the job, they almost always end up hiring the best Filipino for the job.

the cat said...

Recently, I saw something which I had not seen for a long time.

Youngsters selling things door-to-door. My mum answered the door and sent the fella away before I could intervene. I heard, "buy one lah, please".

I remember that when I was a Pri 1 kid, my classmate's mum sold chinese new year cookies. They were delicious.

At another time, my dad gave the benefit of the doubt to a boy selling peanuts who said that he needed the money to buy books.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr Towkey

2. Cheaper foreign workers can do the job, so why hire Singaporeans?

Mr Lucky is talking about good paying jobs.
(Where Singaporeans are actually cheaper)
While you are referring to unskilled low paying jobs Singaporeans do not want.

Seriously. Different league. I mean You and Lucky.
Lucky would probably place an order for the new limited edition Spyder so that his maid can get the shopping done more quickly. While u are still dreaming of ah pek cars like the Benz.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr Lucky

Check this out->

Interesting isn't it?
Maybe its time to dumb down Chinese education.

Anonymous said...

Based on TI index, the corrupt countries(in descending order) in Asia are:

1. Myanmar
2. Bangladesh
4. Vietnam
5. China

During an interview, one senior phlippino manager asked me about my opinion on corruption in Vietnam.

2 things pissed me:

1. senior management is taken over by philippinos.

2. she talked as if her own country is clean.