Saturday, January 07, 2012

My thoughts on the ministerial salary review



If you want to throw a spanner to this whole review, the question to ask is why we can't peg the pay of our political leaders to those of political leaders in other countries instead of the highest paid members of our society. Before you start asking the hard questions, I suggest you listen to Gerald Ee's explanation on how he and his team came up with the new pay structure. I think we should all thank Gerald Ee for taking up this unenviable task. Remember this is the same feller who was called up to take sort out the mess at the NKF. We have all done our national service but Gerald Ee has to do extended national service many times. A review like this will not yield recommendations that will satisfy everyone and exposes Gerald Ee and his team to criticism. How much we should pay a person in the absence of a free market mechanism for political leadership is highly subjective and depend very much on your own value system. Ultimately, the system has to work effectively to attract good honest people who will can secure future progress for Singapore to enhance the citizens' quality of life.  Progress means different things to different people and finding a set of perforamnce measures that is widely acceptable is not so easy. You can design a pay structure that looks fair and later on find out you cannot get good political talent.

What I want to do in this posting is not to go through all the findings of Gerald Ee's team but to look at the larger system in place. Why do we have to pay so much more to get good leaders? Are our leaders so much better? What is so unique about our system that leads to the current situation? Why are there so many SAF generals and rear admirals in the cabinet?

"When I made the decision to join politics in 2006, pay was not a key factor. Loss of privacy, public scrutiny on myself and my family and loss of personal time were. The disruption to my career was also an important consideration. I had some ground to believe that my family would not suffer a drastic change in the standard of living even though I experienced a drop in my income. So it is with this recent pay cut. If the balance is tilted further in the future, it will make it harder for any one considering political office" - Grace Fu on her Facebook

Grace Fu now says she was "mis-understood" but what she said is no different from what the PAP has told us in the past and what it believed or used to believe. One just has to look up old youtube videos on the ministerial pay debate [Link]to see that she is fully consistent.

How did we end up with such high pay for political office holders? The story begins many years ago.....

The war for talent which people talk in recent years began in very early in Singapore. The PAP govt  strongly believed in good leadership which in itself was not a bad thing. However, it also had this highly elitist belief that ordinary Singaporeans will go nowhere without the PAP and this belief amplified the importance of leadership over the contributions of ordinary citizens. While good leadership is important, believing that success is primarily or solely due this leadership is another matter. Today all East Asian countries have succeeded under various styles of leadership even thriving under bad leadership for certain periods - one just have to look at Taiwan, S. Korea, Hong Kong, Japan etc. This "without the PAP, Singapore would have failed" belief drives Singapore's early war for talent. To capture the best talents, the PAP govt expanded the scholarship scheme to harness talent signing up the best "A" level students - not just the president and SAF scholarships but a long list of scholarships from PSC, various GLCs and stat boards. 30 years ago,  ordinary Singaporeans couldn't afford to send their children overseas and these scholarships were the only way to get an education at top overseas universities. You take a quick look at the ministers who were scholars, top civil servants....even Straits Times reporters like Chua Mui Hoong, former Straits Times editor Han Fook Kwang, ...even the opposition now has ex-govt scholars ... Tan Jee Say, Hazel Poa, Benjamin Pwee. This system was already extensive decades ago but when Singapore became more affluent, the PAP govt expanded the war on talent by giving scholarship to foreigners. It even had civil servants going to China to get the best students to come here. With so much emphasis on getting top talent, getting the best, nurturing them and allocating resources and opportunity to selected talents, you would think that Singapore would be running circles around our competitors - but we have not, we grow by importing labor, having casinos ....our productivity has been falling , we appear to be less innovative than most developed countries, we seem to have fewer home grown industries per capita than our competitors.....what has gone wrong?

Along side this "talent war" was the growth of an extensive network of GLCs that own businesses ranging from supermarkets to transport services. Think about where you buy your groceries, where you do your banking, who owns the shopping mall next to your home, who owns the airline you take to go overseas, ...the taxi you take to the airport, the newspaper you read, the cable service you subscribe to, your telephone service, your power supply, your gas, your water supply....and so on. If you tabulate your family expenses, you will find the amount that goes to these companies is not small because the GLCs form a large part of our economy and many are monopolistic rent-earning businesses with little competition and/or had benefited from access to vast state resources. These GLCs crowds out local private enterprises and cut off market-based paths of upward social mobility.

There is spectacular social mobility for our elites in this system:

"My mom is a machine operator" - Chan Chun Sing., 1988

Minister Chan's humble background probably account for his folksy ("kee chiu") style. Recently, the Straits Times featured him as one of those with the potential to be our next Prime Minister[Faces of 2012: Chan Chun Sing - Next PM?]. There are many examples of such cases of social mobility among the selected elites. Their own success reinforces their belief  that the "meritocratic" system and PAP ideology is the best for Singapore. That is why the PAP recruits from this power-elite structure - this is where they find people loyal to their system. If you look through the list of ministers, most,  if not all, are recruited from GLCs, SAF, stat boards or the civil service. The reason why they have to be so highly paid is there are many opportunities in the network that are more financial rewarding and possibly more "cushy" than political appointments. For instance,  Chan's fellow general in the SAF, Ng Yat Chung, transited to a newly created Temasek Holdings position ("portfolio management managing director") and he will leave Temasek this year to take up a CEO position at another GLC, NOL. Yes, our SAF generals are highly capable and can move one industry to another easily without any prior experience. So one cannot fault Chan Chun Sing for feeling he is making a sacrifice when he takes up a political position as minister of MCYS putting himself under the scrutiny of the public. Similarly, PM Lee has had a much tougher job than his brother, a former SAF scholar-general who became the CEO of SingTel.  I'm sure many ex-SAF generals would rather take up a post in Singapore Power, ST Electronics or one of the many GLCs than be in poltics.

Cutting the high pay to "less high" is necessary to placate an increasingly angry public. The anger is at a level that hinders the PAP govt ability to lead.  However, reviewing the high pay without looking at the whole system that drives the demand for high pay misses the big elephant in the room. Although it is always true that good leadership can elevate a country and make life better for everyone, the PAP has pushed the idea of grooming and nurturing selected talent to a detrimental extreme. Allocating  disproportionate state resources and opportunities to a group of selected elites puts them on a virtuous cycle of upward social mobility at the expense of everyone else in the society. The close link between the ruling party and this network of businesses that form our GLCs and the PAP's links to the civil service & SAF has resulted in interests that diverged from those of ordinary Singaporeans. That our political leaders' salaries are not peg similarly to the political leaders of other developed countries, is the result of this skewed system... the basic architecture of which has to changed for Singapore to progress. For those who still argue that this system is good for everyone, the decades of talent war and talent grooming of scholar-elite should have elevated the quality of life of ordinary Singaporeans to superior levels not seen anywhere else in the world since no other country practises this extreme form of elitism....but that has not happened and for many ordinary Singaporeans quality of life has fallen. Today we see the best quality of life for ordinary people in egalitarian societies such as Finland which is also the most competitive economy in the world[Egalitarian Finland most competitive, too]....over there, the govt does the opposite and allocates the most resources to the weakest members of society to build a cohesive society the strength of which is the ability to compete as a team. Singapore has to find a new system structure for future success because we are starting to see the cracks in the current system and outcomes that are increasingly unacceptable to a growing number of ordinary Singaporeans.

121 comments:

Anonymous said...

hey, are you still a S'pore citizen ?

Lye Khuen Way said...

Lucky, nice refreshing take on this old , recurring issue of ministerial pay.

I was delighted on Wednesday, when the Report was more or less made public.
My happiness was short-lived, when the ST put up the Tables on its Thursday edition.
The disclosure of the many Bonuses was a "Wikileak" -Singapore edition !
Am sure 98% of Singaporeans were never aware of such Special Allowance/ Leadership Allowance beside the Performance/ KPI Bounus etc and their scary quantum.
Dare to suugest, that except for some doctors & lawyers from the private sectors, the reason the PAP never seem to be able to attract other talents has to do with the percieved lack of "human touch" that the PAP has earned for itself of late.

Anonymous said...

Our ministers are actually enjoying a monthly salary increase of 23.8%!
This is because in 2010, our ministers received a total of 34.5 months but only 20 months in 2011.

e.g. for ministers with grade MR2:
2010 monthly salary: $62,194 ($2,145,700 divided by 34.5 months)
2011 monthly salary: $77,000 ($1,540,000 divided by 20 months)

77,000 / 62,194 = 123.8%

Anonymous said...

The system that merciless LKY crafted for Singapore is too deeply entrenched. Only another LKY but a merciful one will be able to change the system. There is non on the horizon except for one Chen Show Mao. But time is not on his side. He will need to be in power after the next election. Is this possible ?

Anonymous said...

The Public Service Leadership Allowance was an eye-opener for me. Doubt many people know there was such an allowance.

Anonymous said...

Is there a need to have performance bonus and national bonus for them? In fact, what is the different between them? If you perform well but can't meet the outcome, you will get reward. Likewise, if you don't perform well but somehow achieve the outcome, you also get reward.

Anonymous said...

//Our ministers are actually enjoying a monthly salary increase of 23.8%!
Anon. 7/1/12 11:57//

Yes, the figure(37% cut) is calculated based on the exceptional year 2010, for that year, our ministers received a whopping 18.5 months performance, GDP and other bonuses on top of the fixed pay of 16 months.

Anonymous said...

Don’t understand how the committee derive the figure (37% cut).

Q1: By pegging to the top earners’ pay, ministerial pay will rise and fall in tandem with the top earners’ pay for that year. Then how does the committee know that it will be a cut of 37%?

Q2 : If ministerial pay are pegged to the median of top 1,000 earners, then why there are a total of another 12 months variable pay for the ministers?

Anonymous said...

“Ministerial pay pegged to the median income of top 1,000 Singaporean earners less 40 per cent”

Median of 1,000 is 500th i.e. ministerial pay pegged to the top 500th earner’s pay.

The above formula is flawed because it rewards our ministers to ensure that the rich(top earners) get richer.

Anonymous said...

Many Scholars /Civil servants became GLC CEO. Some are talented like Keppel Corp...

Some like Singtel is just mediocre... Just look at Singtel's share price since its IPO...

Where art thou...? said...

There are many layers in our society.

There is a thicker ceiling between each layer. Not that you cannot break through, you can. It will take lots of effort,sacrafice and networking.

Hard work alone will not help you.
Yet it is a value that is drilled into each schoolboy... except the boy whose parents, ancestors have made it through.

SAF is the tool that the Gah'men uses to scan for people.. and at the same time use it as camouflage for elites to claim their patriotism... it is being used as a leveling machine.

Many positions have been pre-ordained and only a maverick that can break through can upset the flow.

We seek that maverick among us...
..for better or for worse.

Yes, even for worse.

It may cause damage to our way of life or our well being as a nation, but if we look at it as a process that a nation has to go through, then, it must be so.

I believe Singaporeans have grown up a little as evident in the last elections. We can weather a political turmoil, we can weather a economic upheaveal.

I dare say, we can also not use race as a card to find that maverick.

This is the way we can resolve our predicament.. wanting effective government yet not as costly and as authoritative.

Will the maverick please stand up?

Anonymous said...

All the developed countries in the world have gone through periods of political turmoil. Some with very disastrous results.

But most have come out better, stronger.

The USA had the Civil War
The French had their revolutions
The Russians had theirs

Singapore? SMRT train disruptions.

And we scream, stomp our feet and demand that the CEO resign.

Would the trains run better now?

I doubt.

We are so kiasi that we complain and complain.. yet do nothing to make sustainable & effective change.

We need a real experiential event.

Anonymous said...

This is a very good post!

I have always believed in the incestuous relationship between the Government and government linked companies.

It's so crystal clear now. PM Lee is appointed by PAPa Lee to hold on to the reins of political power so that his brother and his wife can rake in millions working in a "private" companies. That explains perfectly why PAP wants to tie their pay to CEOs in GLC!!!

Anonymous said...

//the question to ask is why we can't peg the pay of our political leaders to those of political leaders in other countries instead of the highest paid members of our society. Lucky Tan//

If we can agree that the core role of govern¬ment is to raise the livelihoods of the peo¬ple, then we should benchmark ministerial salaries to the median income ao that it will rise and fall in tandem to the median income.

It cloud be 10 to 25 times the median income. this would be about $480,000 to $1.2 million. It is simple, easy to understand and transparent.

Anonymous said...

these ppl r legends in their own mind. They are not fooling anyone. If you go to anywhere in EU and US and try to convince them that these are the real elites, you will be laughed at.

The closest to an elite that I can agree with is the Brotherhood definition:

(1) Good education (20%)

(2) Must have worked in at least 3 countries. Worked in at least 5 companies. Aspire to position of VP at least in a multinational.

(3) At 35 to 45 start a business.

Thats the truth and nothing but the truth.

Anonymous said...

PAP's faulty logic on leadership & pay is as follows;

One wife good.
Ten wives, ten times as good.

Expensive PAP talent is worthless,
without the value of public service in their heart.
Give me an Opposition politician any day.

Anonymous said...

Let's all sing this song in GE 2016 to the PAP politicians;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jsaTElBljOE

Anonymous said...

The worst is yet to come!

When the Army Boys get into command, only then will Singaporeans really know/realize how daft they have been.

To ask people to 'kee chiu' is to seek for agreement. The Next time it will be 'we are the Authority and the Laws, no need for You to 'kee chiu' or nod your head. Just do as You are told.
Done!

Anonymous said...

Here in Singapore, a low wage worker is encouraged to attend courses to "upgrade" their skills.

Most of the courses are conducted in English and the skills learnt is not what the industry wants.

The industry wants cheap labour.They are not looking for people with skills! The skills will be learnt on the job.

The low wage worker knows it
The employer knows it

But the Minister is clueless about it!

The minister listens to employers and will do all possible to help employers get what they want.

Business owners donate to the party
and they expect returns.

So the focus is business.. not the low wage earner

Low wage earner will remain earning low wages because the Gahmen knows that they cannot train them to do higher value jobs.
Why? because our education system denies them by using streaming and putting in place onerous filtering to go to Poly and Uni.. even the JC or secondary schools.

So, ministers are not doing what poor people need.. they do everything for rich people.

Anonymous said...

Many Singaporeans do not like this. Millionaire ministers. Christ already!

Anonymous said...

"Singapore has to find a new system structure for future success because we are starting to see the cracks in the current system and outcomes that are increasing unacceptable to a growing number of ordinary Singaporeans."
Lucky Tan

You mean find an better alternative to the PAP and PAP system?

And you think there will be one in the next 5 years?

If there is one, there will also be be no more 60%. Because these are all connected.

Anonymous said...

If too much money can corrupt & blind a person to his own values;
then LKY has single handedly misled 3 or 4 generations of Singapore's talent.

But this is of course not true.
Singapore's finest can never be corrupted so easily.

Anonymous said...

Interesting article, giving fresh perspectives on the ministerial pays. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Sinkie NUS Engineering Honour Grad reduced to scavengering in rubbish to survive

This engineer scavenges rubbish to feed his family of seven. He searches through garbage through the night and endures stinky smells and diseases!

53-year-old Mr Xu is a Honours Graduate from the NUS Engineering School. He started working in a big company in 1993 and stayed ror 14 years.

However, he was retrenched in 2007. He became depressed and could not find a job after that. He believe the stigma of being retrenched is a stain on his resume.

...

http://forums.asiaone.com/showthread.php?t=46012


One month of a minister salary is more than enough to feed this man's family of seven for 3 years.

Is the minister's pay too high?

Is this man too poor?

SLS said...

"these ppl r legends in their own mind. They are not fooling anyone. If you go to anywhere in EU and US and try to convince them that these are the real elites, you will be laughed at.

The closest to an elite that I can agree with is the Brotherhood definition:

(1) Good education (20%)

(2) Must have worked in at least 3 countries. Worked in at least 5 companies. Aspire to position of VP at least in a multinational.

(3) At 35 to 45 start a business.

Thats the truth and nothing but the truth"

hey hey hey i qualify

1. grad from a top 20 uni according to shanghai jiatong ranking

2. worked in singapore, shanghai, london, hk. worked in 5 companies with the majority of time in 2 of them. dont know if my rank can be considered VP though. had 40 traders under me in 3 teams at 2 countries.

3. started business at 30, became sleeping partner after cashing out at 33.

but strange man, PAP never approach me.

Anonymous said...

Hello,
Lucky Tan,
are you sure you reference the right video ? I thought that the MP video in Mr Brown's site is The real McCoy which earnestly and brutally honest about PAPaya's sacrifice !

Anonymous said...

"but strange man, PAP never approach me."

You never 'kee chiu" that's why.

Anonymous said...

Did anyone ask why military personals are groomed and pampered by LKY, and why did he puts his sons into high military positions ?

The answer is here. In the history of government change, the military plays a major role in the transition. Rebels overthrow the government through military and guerilla warfare. Such hostile takeover of government has rarely been peaceful and more usually associated with violence and riot.

You will see the insecured LKY grooming all these potential military leeders with excellent academic achievement and pampered them with special position in GLC, politics so that they will feel beholden to Lee dynasty that they never revolt against the Lee. Those who left becomes part of Lee's elite circles to ensure that they get monitor and been in touch.

Anonymous said...

I believe our men in the SAF will not obey orders to shoot at us.

Neither will they rally behind someone who was a BG.

However, their sights will be trained on ministers who have been paid too much and made their lives difficult in uniform and out.

They wear the insignias of Singapore not the blue circle & lightning.

Anonymous said...

"I believe our men in the SAF will not obey orders to shoot at us."

Hmmm, that's very true. I somehow can relate the feeling of LiuTuckYew, KeeChuiChan, TinCan. Let me summarize their feelings.


1) KeeChuiChan
NanPeh old fart ! Make me a laughing stock.
Eat full nothing to do, is it ? Ask me to join politics, and now what happens ?
Whenever I go, people greet me not by my name, but by KEE CHUI their hand. Don't let me see the old fart kee chui his hand on me !



2) LiuTuckYew
TuLan the old fart. Now whenever I go, people show me the dumbAndDumber face ! Am I so really that dumb ? Perhaps I am ! Caveat Emptor ! Who call me so dumb to join politics ! Just look at pathetic state I'm in ! No indignity and pay cut some more !


3) TinCan
Shit this old man. I could have indulged in my luxury life with LV, Kate Spade bags and goodies. Now whenever I go I feel so strange because people greet me by my famous KateSpade sign. What a idiot to join politics. Now I really don't know what to say !

Anonymous said...

‘Pay cut of 37%”

We should compare the new ministers’ salaries with year 2009 salaries instead of year 2010 because year 2010 is exceptionally good year, our ministers received a whopping 34.5 months (16 months fixed pay + 9 months performance bonus + 8 months GDP bonus + 1.5 months annual variable bonus).

Anonymous said...

Propose a formula for your own salary and present the proposal to the parliament for approval. The parliament is dominant by you and your cronies and you know your proposal is definitely passed.

After the people object to your proposal, you appoint one of your cronies to review the proposal and he recommend a revised proposal that you and your cronies (not the people) are happy about it. Then you present the revised proposal to the parliament again for approval. You know that all your cronies in the parliament will support the revised proposal because the revised proposal is for their own good. The parliament is still dominant by your cronies and the revised proposal will be approved.

Tell me what sort of parliament system is this? Is this corruption at the highest level? If not, what is it?

Anonymous said...

No wonder they are so non corrupt.

Anonymous said...

They should return to the pay scale before they even debated the issue of having millionaire ministers in the first place. What pay cut? Return back to the original state of pay! That alone is more than suffice. Why should a minister be paid more than $30 0000 a month? Ridiculous!

What kind of brain cells do they have? Platinum made? Or self-enhancement made ministers who are only interested in self-perpetuating themselves.

Self-serving and people still tolerate this. They must be reading too much straits times and watching too much Channel news asia.

They are paid millions while they lock our CPF at 55.

Do you think this is right? Does this make sense? Is this fair?

You know it's wrong. Why are you tolerating such an offence?

Why are you voting for policies that promote overcrowding in your daily life?

How could some progress package immediately change your mind that easily?

Why do you let them get away with this so easily?

Why are you morally unclear? Have all Singaporeans lost their moral courage already?!

It's seems only the man who smashed the SMRT windows to save the lives of the commuters is the only Singaporean left with moral courage.

Social activism is the way to go now in Singapore.

We have the highest income inequality in the world. Our social cohesion is shaky and many singaporeans are living very insecure lives as the government pass the buck to the common man.

So-called first world with third world policies that does not benefit singaporeans.

When there in a war in singapore, when is the loyalty of the PRs and foreigners here? Where is it precisely?!

We are so-called rich but most singaporeans can't even afford to fly singapore airlines.

Downplay and whitewashing data in the Straits times to the point of omitting any controversies made by many incompetent and insensitive and impolite ministers is deplorable.

Go ahead, tolerate it for another 4 years.

Today, India INdians and PRCs are working as property agents sellings PRCs owned HDB PUBLIC HOUSING (mind you!) to singaporeans. And these agents tell singaporeans how much COV to pay!

What have we become, huh? Why are we all serving NS? And why are so many of us wanting to migrate from the hypocrisy?

What is going on here in SIngapore?

Do something instead of always saying "bo pian" or "no choice".

It's sickening!

Anonymous said...

Anon 00:47 hits the nail on the head. What kind of system are we promoting in this country?

Anonymous said...

You propose a salary formula for you and your cronies to base on a group of top earners who are mostly from GLCs and your cronies' companies. You also know that your controlled parliament will pass your proposal.

Next thing you do is to get GLCs and your cronies' companies to pay the chief very very well. As such, your and your cronies' salary will be increased accordingly.

What is this? Is this corruption at the highest level?

After the revised salary proposal, one of your cronies can say she suffer pay cut by joining politics. She claimed she can earn much more in 'private' sector. Look at what 'private' sector she has worked before joining politics. Are GLCs really 'private' sector? If she is right, GLC must have paid her very very high salary. This proves that you have artificially raised the GLCs chief salary having know that this will effect higher salary for you and your cronies.

You see, based on logic and deduction, the people can prove the current system is very very clever. On the surface, it is not corruption at the highest level and abuse of power granted by the people to you. Is this 'legalized' corruption at the highest level?

Anonymous said...

i find your blogs enlightening considering i am not trained in politics and economics. do continue blogging!

Anonymous said...

The people here are very mild. If the opposition wins the election, we should try them all for treason. Seek execution or very long prison terms. Recovery of money goes without saying.

Anonymous said...

//Next thing you do is to get GLCs and your cronies' companies to pay the chief very very well. As such, your and your cronies' salary will be increased accordingly.
Anon. 8/1/12 01:05//

The rich (top earners) get richer and the poor get poorer.

Anonymous said...

//We should compare the new ministers’ salaries with year 2009 salaries instead of year 2010 because year 2010 is exceptionally good year, our ministers received a whopping 34.5 months (16 months fixed pay + 9 months performance bonus + 8 months GDP bonus + 1.5 months annual variable bonus).
Anon. 8/1/12 00:19//


Don’t be surprised if we discover that it is an increase from year 2009 salaries!

Anonymous said...

"If you want to throw a spanner to this whole review, the question to ask is why we can't peg the pay of our political leaders to those of political leaders in other countries instead of the highest paid members of our society."
Lucky Tan

The short and pointed answer why we can't is because 60% agree with with what PAP peg their pay to.

Anonymous said...

Peg their salary to the top 1000 Private Sector earners and still complain.

Wow ...... talk about an entitlement mentality.

Anonymous said...

Singapore is short of talents for ministers lah, because foreign talents cannot be MP or minister what.

So in basic economics, when there is a shortage but there is demand, the price will go up lah.

The price will only fall when the demand drop lah.

Or in elections, the votes for the ruling party drop lah.

Then the ministers salary will also drop lah.

Or even out of job if the voters vote them out lah.

It's that simple what, why make it so complicated with so much thoughts, analysis and criticism? For what?

Anonymous said...

wow ...
GLC is actually Goverment-Linked Corruption.

Anonymous said...

We were not asked if we agreed to the formula or for pay increases

We were not asked if we agreed to have a Senior M, Emeritus etc

We were not asked if we needed a Prseident that does nothing

We were not asked if CPF withdrawal should be extended.

If surveys were done, they must have been confidential and only trageted at academics and their own kind supporters.

The parliament is majority controlled and token disagreements noted.

Since they know what is best, let them do what they please.

Dont ask me to stand up
Dont ask me to wave flags
Dont ask me to be better, faster cheaper.

Kojakbt said...

I just want to know, given that they are elites and, supposedly, capable generals and talents, what have they done for Singaporeans since 2006? Have our lives gotten better? What I see is only screw-ups after screw-ups coming from all these "talented" elites and generals - which leads me to think, so what if you are a "talent"?

My own view is that perhaps they have been too-overpaid until they become complacent. So what if they fail or get booted-out? They are still millionaires and can afford to retire comfortably! Hence, they can afford to be complacent once they “make” it into the elite camp… no need to work so hard now.

Look at Mah Bow Tan after he blundered on HDB housings. Now that he is no longer the Minister, did he become a kurang guni man like the poor bloke mentioned in the TRE article (http://www.tremeritus.com/2012/01/08/unemployed-nus-graduate-decides-to-become-karung-guni-man/)? No, right? Ok, granted that he may feel a bit “shy” appearing in public in Singapore since so many Singaporeans don’t like him, but he can easily take his millions and retire in Australia (his wife is an Australian) and with that kind of money earned from us, it’s more than sufficient to feed 3 generations of his family!

Anonymous said...

Elites, PAP, business people are not Singaporeans

They pretend to be. They are here to milk as much as possible, to perpetuate a cycle of 'daftness' so that their future is guaranteed.

Given the first sign of trouble, they would have scooted off to their alternate countries and homes.
This is the first rule of risk management. They are not stupid like me.

They have information that is far more useful and they network among themselves to preserve their ilk.

Well, since I have only my HDB, my Diploma and my own miserable part time job.. what else could I lose?
CPF?.. it wasn't mine in the first place!

Since I dont have much to lose.. the elites better be sure what their next step will be.

Anonymous said...

In my opinion, to serve the country/people as a minister or MP is an HONOUR. It shouldn't be tied to how much one should be paid. It is a TRUST that your country fellowmen bestowed to you through their votes. ( Thus GRC as mentioned before is not fair as reflected in the case of GY & TPL.)

Our new MPs / ministers are getting younger, I wonder do they have the experience & wisdom to bring our nation to the next lap in view of the everchanging world environment? Thus the salary is still considered too high even after adjustment relative to the average Singaporeans. Even any employee drawing high pay understands that he could be oust anytime if he can't meet the expectation of its company. As for our PAPs, they're guaranteed a high remuneration of 5 yrs!

I feel that the MPs & newly appoinited Ministers must be in their 50s with certain life/business experiences, have a successful track record & integrity. At that age,they usually have provided enuf for their families & will not hv much financial concerns, the next self-actualisation stage in their life is to do what they want, be it in charity, serving our country,..etc. Unless they are the greedy ones!

Anonymous said...

With $200,000, some MP are working part-time?
$1.1 million for a newly appointed minister?

How much do the average Singaporeans earn yearly? $30K, $50K, $80K, $100K, $150K...?

In independent schools, any family with a total household income of $7200 and above will not enjoy financial assistance.
Withn a combined income not exceeding $12,000, one can't apply HDB but EC.
But with our high living cost, is earning $7.2K & $12K considered High wage earners?
Thus, annual income of $418K as a Parliamentary Sec, Mayor $660K, Minister of State $770K, Snr MOS $935K is considered too much too high!
In my opinion, With 300K per annum, one can already live very confomtable in S'pore. Too low? That's what South Korean President is paid (population 50 million)

Anonymous said...

"I feel that the MPs & newly appoinited Ministers must be in their 50s with certain life/business experiences, have a successful track record & integrity."

Elders, preferably already earned their keeps(hence,no need the shackles of high remuneration or maintenance) and lived a balance life.

Not fukking young punks barely out of sucking their mother's tits.

Anonymous said...

"...and lived a balance life."

If we have people who lead by showing moderation in their lives, we would not have useless people, over paid and HIGHLY UNQUALIFIED, preaching down on us.

Those kind, we can easily find from a large pool of idiotic populace.

Anonymous said...

The overpriced salary is already a corruption. Why should we even review how much less corrupted our ministers should be? End of the day, they still take home more than they deserved while Singaporeans standard of livings and income has never been improved since eon ago. Talk about one set of formular for Singaporeans to bear and another set of welfarism for the ministers. Absurd!

Anonymous said...

Chill!

Enjoy your cup of milk shake.

http://m.youtube.com/index?desktop_uri=%2F&gl=SG#/watch?feature=m-trends&v=rXOtYPcC4tQ

Anonymous said...

If money is used to attract people to one's cause, it is only natural to attract those who crave money.

Anonymous said...

I think many people are missing the boat here. The pertinent question to ask is: Why 60.1% of Singaporeans say it is OK to allow ministers to enjoy millionaire lifestyles while locking our CPF at age 55 at the same time?

Why the double standards and why 60.1% of Singaporeans say this is OK?

I believe the younger generations will not tolerate them. It is clear meritocracy does not exist in Singapore when you look how much these ministers are paid. It's elitism that is clear here.

Anonymous said...

Lucky
I would like to seek your (and other readers')views regarding the question why we can't peg the pay of our political leaders to those of political leaders in other countries instead of the highest paid members of our society.

We know that a good banker, for example, has the option to join any of the local or foreign banks. In order to attract this talented banker into its employ, the interested bank must offer an attractive compensation package vis-a-vis the other banks.

The pool of talent that our country is attracting to become a political leader does not include foreigners. For example, Obama is not considering whether to run for US president or SG president. Cameron does not have the option whether to run for UK PM or SG PM.

Since we are looking for talented citizens to be political leaders and these people are likely to be successful in their own career, the compensation package must be attractive enough. In other words, the options is NOT between our ministerial pay versus the pay of political leaders in other countries. The options is between our ministerial pay versus other top paying jobs available to a talented citizen.

What is your response to the above logic?

Anonymous said...

Political talent is a myth. There is no such thing as political talent or that we should be led to believe our lives depend on them.

You perpetuate this myth, you end up with elitist's rule that keeps pushing the talented paychecks.

Talented my foot. You are as talented as the useless preacher!

Anonymous said...

@20:03

I think you are right in a sense. But I would think that we should also avoid attracting the wrong kind of talent. People without political aspirations shouldn't be parachuted in. Those who join politics should have a passion to serve and improve the lives of others. Different skill sets are involved because leading a nation and leading a corporation are not the same.

Leaders should be groomed. Those selected to become Ministers should preferably be MPs who have served a few terms and proved themselves to be good leaders with the heart to serve. These MPs should be full-time MPs and not holding on to directorships in other companies.

The MPs are elected by the people. They definitely will have the mandate to lead as Ministers. Once we say no to parachuters, there wouldn't be a problem of not compensating enough. Since they all start from an annual salary of 200k, far below the million dollar mark.

Anonymous said...

We shouldn't accept anyone just because he is a CEO or MD of a big company. Smart people with the wrong mindset can destroy our nation. Let's consider those with passion first and foremost. And choose the capable ones within this pool of people. Surely, they won't ask for the sky.

Anonymous said...

This is SIN Incorp naturally, it is run by CEOs.

CEO - Certified EgOmaniacs

I am .... said...

Hopeless people these singaporeans
Totaly hopeless!

Leaderless
Rudderless
Clueless

Please shut up!
Go back to work you mongrels!
You have no idea what hell you will experience when things go wrong here!

500sqkm of land
No water
No oil
No minerals
and also.. now
No brains either!

and you want cheaper, better MPs???

Hopeless people.

Anonymous said...

Soon, much of their work, and DECISIONS MAKING, will be replaced by Artificial Intelligence. Why pay them millions for ... Talking??? Most complex thinking and decisions maling will be done by sophisticated computing system...iphone Siri is a sampling of what is to come.

Siri can even replace these overrated jokers - soon.

So come down from your ivory towers and drink cheap kopi like all of us!

Anonymous said...

Yup, it is highly possible a computer can deliver a political directive better than any living creatures. Hey, the computer already beaten man in chess. :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks, for taking an incisive look into the causes instead of just looking at the effects. One of the reasons for this wide network of elites in GLC, Military and civil service is political control, to keep elites well-fed and happy, and thus, keep them out of opposition politics. Alas, this strategy can't work forever. Inducting elites and technocrats into politics has resulted in many problems and public discontent which we are now witnessing...
PAP will, without doubt, decline further in the years ahead, as majority of Singaporeans simply cannot identify with PAP's elite branding

Anonymous said...

Wait for onsolidatuon of chips.When the process is completed, we shall enter Into a new era of peace and stability

We shall rid of all political vermins.

Anonymous said...

Wait for the consolidation of chips.When the process is completed, we shall enter Into a new era of peace and stability

We shall rid of all political vermins.

Anonymous said...

Hopeless people.

8/1/12 21:44

Aiyah, since when r they able to think out of their cages?

Anonymous said...

I am .... said...8/1/12 21:44,

You are one of those hopeless people simply because you do not understand the key issue here. Let me tell you the key issue - this government is totally unaccountable and completely not transparent. Please read the below from a netizen which tells you what it is:


The logic of politicians’ remuneration:

You propose a formula for your own salary and present the proposal to the parliament for approval. You and your cronies have total control of the parliament. You know your proposal is definitely passed without meaningful debate.

You propose salary formula for you and your cronies to base on a group of top earners who are mostly from GLCs and your cronies' companies. You also know that your controlled parliament will pass your proposed formula. Next thing you do is to get GLCs and your cronies' companies to pay the chief very very well. As such, your and your cronies' salary will be increased accordingly.

After the people object to your proposal, you appoint one of your cronies to review the proposal and he recommend a revised proposal that you and your cronies (not the people) are happy about it. Then you present the revised proposal to the parliament again for approval. You know that all your cronies in the parliament will support the revised proposal because the revised proposal is for their own good. The parliament is still dominant by your cronies and the revised proposal will be approved without any question. 


After the revised salary proposal is done, one of your cronies can say she suffer pay cut by joining politics. She claimed she could earn much more in 'private' sector. Look at what 'private' sector she has worked before joining politics. She has worked for few GLCs before invited to join politics. Are GLCs really 'private' sector? If she is right, those GLCs must have paid her very very high salary. This proves that if you have raised the GLCs chief salary this will actually effect higher salary for you and your cronies. 



By controlling the corruption at lower levels, foreigners who do not know the details of this system will believe that a pro-business governance system is free of corruption. Is the system really corruption-free?

Based on the logic, it proves that the current system is very very clever to ‘legalize’ corruption at the highest level. If not, what is it?

You may look at the logics of GRC, NCMP and NMP. It is not difficult to understand the ultimate motive behind a fake democratic ‘feudal dynasty’ politics in action in a modern world.

Anonymous said...

Probably we pay too much. That's why we have so much problems. Flooding, etc. probably pay less, less problem.

Anonymous said...

Elites buttering elites, what's new?

Next

Anonymous said...

The underlining message of our political leaders to the plebeians is this: you take care of their SUPREME NEEDS and they shall take care of your MEDIOCRE NEEDS.

And many think that's a good deal either because they are stupid or their mouths have been jammed by several fat burgers.

reservist_cpl said...

It is interesting that you mention that we have no "market-based mechanism" for determining ministerial salaries.

What if, say, ministers were directly elected? Wouldn't that be a competitive system (if not quite a market)?

Anonymous said...

another stupid comment

fpc said...

not true.

govt can reduce their demand for retired SAF generals by not wanting them in TH, GIC, GLC.

why do you think there is a demand for these people outside of TH/GIC/GLC?

So, govt has a lot of bargaining power when it comes to employing these retired generals.

question is why does the govt want to pay these generals well?

Anonymous said...

Today I went to work and had to take a cab as I had taken some cough syrup before going to bed last night and I was sort of drowsy.

When I flagged a cab and paid the taxi driver, I was stunned to find out that the once $11.45 fare has become $14.45!

What's goin' on in Singapore?

How is the government going to expect SIngaporeans to have more children when the cost of living is already too expensive to sustain a family?

Along this vein, the government place deludes the people with the impression they are taking a 30% pay cut when they actually increased their pay way beyond that a couple of times.

I now know why they say life is unfair. But heh! People let it be that way.

Anonymous said...

The cold hard truth is that while the peasants on this little red dot is still debating and wondering if the 'massive' pay cut is enough or too much, our deaf frogs after such a 'massive' cut are still the most expensive leaders in the world and earn many times more than all the other world leaders. :(

Anonymous said...

I don't know about you guys. But I've resolved to save as much of my money as I can and leave Singapore. I'm not taking any taxis, nor buying drinks when I go and eat at the hawker centre and buy loaves of bread for breakfast rather than eating out.

I'll save as much as I can as I need it.

Things are just going to get ugly in Singapore. They know this, so they milk the system and ride the wave while they are still there

We need to find our own paths. The government here is pushing responsibility and financial risks to its citizens. Yet, at the same time, they made sure they are more than ever secure for themselves and their families. And they use "self-reliance to shift their responsibilities. Singapore is no longer suitable for work-life balance/ harmony. Every Singapore you ask on the streets will tell you this.

Enough said. I'm packing.

Anonymous said...

"When I flagged a cab and paid the taxi driver, I was stunned to find out that the once $11.45 fare has become $14.45!

What's goin' on in Singapore?"
Anon 9/1/12 07:45

Next time don't take cab even if you are drowsy. In this way you can save some money.

Anonymous said...

There were CALLS for a new 2nd Review Committee to review the Ministers bonuses plus to TOTALLY remove the GDP Bonus and Pension { now called National Bonus and CPF Scheme Bonus.}

Anonymous said...

One of my best decision in life was to pack up and leave Singapore 14 years ago. My quality of life improve many folds. Life is enjoyable as it should be.
Then I already foreseen all these papist rubbishs.

Anonymous said...

MINISTERS are CIVIL SERVANTS. Singaporeans expects the MINISTERS to draw the same type of bonuses (plus same quantity in terms of the number of months of bonus) AS THE ORDINARY CIVIL SERVANTS.

Anonymous said...

Some thoughts here
http://unstraitstimes.blogspot.com/2012/01/minister-pay-cut-justified.html

Anonymous said...

These bunch of pap assholes r never good at anything other than enriching themselves thru unjustified humongous pay.
We are now being told that we have run out of options to increase the capacity of Stamford Canal. Singaporeans ought to be worried as what other areas have we run out of options should there be further changes in nature and the world ? Yet LKY can boast that they have already started studying as to how to shield Singapore from the rising sea level. This senile old man is dam good in selling dreams to Singaporeans. Now Singaporeans are having nightmares.

Anonymous said...

The canal cannot expand further. What do you do? Power the drainage lah. If the engineers are worth their salt, they would explore the possibility of such a drainage system which will get round our space constrain.

It can be done.

Anonymous said...

I believe that we need to pay our leader well. And the current level sounds fair. Long ago, rulers are noble who were the few that gotten education. They usually turned to serve as government and needed little pay, simply because they were already rich or very rich. Now I think the review is done and salary is adjusted, we should move on. Time has changed.

However, the writer mentioned another point. The creation of an elite by the PAP, which is more dangerous. It is like a factory producing leaders and honestly we would see reduction in quality. These are similar minded creatures. Like nature, any self breeding for too long will face problem. We are face with a government and members of parliament that are one type. There is no variety of
experience and view points. This is an issue that needed to be addressed. They are good man but they are produced by the same factory.

Anonymous said...

We need stability in govt. That's what you guys failed to achieve when you invested in elitism.

Anonymous said...

Interesting video on inequality,found it in a malaysian blog, fits right well with the premise of Lucky's blog..inequality

http://econsmalaysia.blogspot.com/2012/01/costs-of-inequality.html

Anonymous said...

"It is like a factory producing leaders and honestly we would see reduction in quality. These are similar minded creatures. Like nature, any self breeding for too long will face problem."
Anon 9/1/12 23:29

What's wrong with being similar minded when at least 60% at every election are also similar minded on who to vote for?

Your concerns about self breeding in this case, and this case only, is unfounded.

Anonymous said...

"So in basic economics, when there is a shortage but there is demand, the price will go up lah."
Anon 8/1/12 13:14

Exactly.

Some more if the product quality is no good but if there is great demand because of shortage, the price will also go up lah.

Anonymous said...

When I want to renovate my HDB flat, I get at least 2 contractors to give me a quotation.
If I only have one contractor, I do not know if the quotation I'm given is the highest in the world or fair.

Similarly with Ministers' salaries.

Get a strong Opposition in Parliament to give us a second quotation.

Anonymous said...

My sneaking suspicion is that no talent really wants to join PAP.

That is why the PAP (using Singapore tax payers' money) has to pay such high salaries to attract people (dare we use the word talent?) to join them.

Anonymous said...

Other countries politicians no doubt earn less than Singapore ministers but they are ultimately richer.

Just look at Thaksin and Mahathir...

You may blame the 60.1% sinkies but end of the day, it is a fact that without the pappies, Singapore will collapse. So be thankful to them instead!

Anonymous said...

How to be thankful when their policies is depriving singaporeans of jobs; what more with the massive flood of foreigners all aaround us now?

Can you walk 100 m without seeing a pinoy, PRC or India Indians?

They are taking away jobs and opportunities as well. How to be thankful when singaporea

Singaporeans are not marrying because the cost of living is high and they can't afford a flat let alone a child?

Against this backdrop, the ministers should be having more children with their millions, but are they?

It is this glaring disparity that is the reason why 40% of the people here are angry with the PAP self-serving, self perpetuating and self enhancement policies. Why do you serve NS for?

You just wasted 2 and half years of life in gainful income which could have been deposit set aside for your hdb flat.

All those who support the PAP does not necessarily mean they support their policies.

They're just pop idol infants.

Anonymous said...

How to be thankful when their policies is depriving singaporeans of jobs; what more with the massive flood of foreigners all aaround us now?

Can you walk 100 m without seeing a pinoy, PRC or India Indians?

They are taking away jobs and opportunities as well. How to be thankful when singaporea

Singaporeans are not marrying because the cost of living is high and they can't afford a flat let alone a child?

Against this backdrop, the ministers should be having more children with their millions, but are they?

It is this glaring disparity that is the reason why 40% of the people here are angry with the PAP self-serving, self perpetuating and self enhancement policies. Why do you serve NS for?

You just wasted 2 and half years of life in gainful income which could have been deposit set aside for your hdb flat.

All those who support the PAP does not necessarily mean they support their policies.

They're just pop idol infants.

PAP! PAP! PAP! PAP!! said...

Talk cock sing song

PAP will NEVER EVER give up control.

This island is the only place they can practice their craft.. they tried to do it in Suchou but China not stupid leh.

So do whatever you want... vote SDP,WP,any other P donch be afraid..
PAP will never give it up..

I bet my HDB & my CPF on it.

Anonymous said...

On surface, the figure (37% cut) appears to be quite substantial.

But on second thought, year of 2010 is exceptional. Our ministers received a whopping of 34.5 months pay (16 months fixed pay + 9 months performance bonus + 8 months GDP bonus + 1.5 months annual variable bonus).

So it is more appropriate to compare the new ministers’ pay with year 2009 or 2008.
Don’t be surprised if the new salaries are an increase from year 2009 salaries!

e.g. if ministers received only 20(the same as 2011)months pay for year 2009, then the new ministers’ pay will be an increase of 23.8% from 2009!

Here the mathematics:
for ministers with grade MR2:
2010 salary: $2,145,700 (34.5 months pay)
2009 salary: $1,243,884 (2,145,700 ÷ 34.5 x 20)
2011 salary: $1,540,000
1,540,000 ÷ 1,243,884 = 123.8%

Anonymous said...

SALARY - TIME TO ASK THE MINISTERS
--------------------------------

Every politician must state in his election manifesto;

a)What he wants to accomplish in Parliament if elected

b)Expected salary

c)When he will return our CPF money back to Singaporeans if elected.

Now that's transparency.
Now everybody can vote wisely in GE 2016.

Anonymous said...

The problem with Belgium

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/brunowaterfield/4769146/The_problem_with_Belgium/



No Love Lost: Is Belgium About to Break in Two?

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2000517,00.html



Belgium elections: Beginning of the end of a nation?

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2010/0614/Belgium-elections-Beginning-of-the-end-of-a-nation


From CIA:
Dutch (official) 60%, French (official) 40%, German (official) less than 1%, legally bilingual (Dutch and French)

If only Sinkapore can be allowed to split between the West and East with foreigners holding influence in the west and locals in the east.

Anonymous said...

Great insight and compelling rationality - as always talk is cheap - translation into a functioning and prosperous society is a long way from speeches

Agree we must change as the LKY model is fraying. CSM is the best catalyst and change agent we have

Anonymous said...

CCS is not a good example to demonstrate social mobility in Singapore. Rather, it is the perfect example of the govt handpicking academically bright students at a young age and then grooming them on an expedited 'scholar' track to a position of political power.

It is well known that such people selected on scholar track can do little wrong and are often promoted within Civil Services at a fixed temporal pace as long as no 'big mistakes' are made.

In this aspect, CCS has not shown ANY leadership qualities outside of the civil services indicative of leadership NOT spearheaded/groomed/protected by the govt. And at present as a MP, he continues to fail to demonstrate any.

Kojakbt said...

To Lucky Tan, u might want to take note of this. The British Cameron Govt has appointed a committee to look at impact of immigration (ie, past Labour Govt’s FT policy) on British citizens:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/immigration/9004733/Immigation-does-keep-Britons-out-of-jobs-government-committee-admits.html

Excerpt:

A Briton is “displaced” from the labour market for every four extra migrants from outside the EU that arrive in the UK, the Migration Advisory Committee (Mac) concluded.

Professor David Metcalf, chairman of the Mac, also criticised the use of GDP for measuring the effects of the influx of foreign nationals as “pro-immigration” because more migrants will logically expand the economy.

Prof Metcalf said the current system, which uses GDP to look at the impact on both UK residents and migrants, “can’t be the right way of thinking about this”. It would be better to consider the impact on the economic well-being of the resident population alone, he said.

Immigration Minister Damian Green said: “This Government is working to reduce net migration from the hundreds of thousands a year we saw under the last government, to the tens of thousands we saw in the 1990s.

“Controlled immigration can bring benefits to the UK, but uncontrolled immigration can put pressure on public services, on infrastructure and on community relations. This report makes clear that it can also put pressure on the local labour market

Anonymous said...

Bloggers aka paper warriors have done some good for Sin and Singaporeans.
And
if they get onto the Battle field, Singaporeans will benefit greatly.

Will the Blogging Greats step forward?

Anonymous said...

Our ministers' pay shud be pegged to hk and taiwan ministers becos they are fellow dragon economies; you also get free firecrackers CDs from Taiwan govt. In Singapore you tangugu, why like that?

This is retarded. Siphoning money off illegally is corruption, but paying oneself exorbitant salaries is not. Singapore born and bred have to do NS, foreigners of course no need. It is like that, cant be helped! Of course...

Anonymous said...

Aren't they behaving like they are the best government on the planet?

Anonymous said...

Do we really need to allocate more national resources paid for by the taxes of all to those 'talents' who may end up knowing how to game the system to erich themselves rather than to benefit society.

Anonymous said...

"This island is the only place they can practice their craft.. they tried to do it in Suchou but China not stupid leh."

In fact, if they try in any other countries, most likely they will be treated like Santa Claus distributing free gifts. What they are good in our own country is exactly like what other people are good in other peoples' countries.

Beureacratic 'business' people can never react as fast as private owners as it is not their own money which is at stake.

Anonymous said...

Great post. Great analysis. Keep up your good work!

Anonymous said...

One fundamental reason why the ministerial salary can be so high is because Singapore does not have real democracy. Imagine what would happen if there is a genuine 2-party system in Singapore? No wonder PM said 2-party system is not good for Singapore - hmm, which part of Singapore?

Anonymous said...

Bro, his name is Gerard not Gerald.

Anonymous said...

Do not fear a freak election result.

The PAP will not release any inch of their hard work.. so worry not about having a government paralysis.
They are also very image conscious..
they want to show off to other wolrd leaders their capabilities and their "success".

Vote with your beliefs and fear not.

They will threaten that your mother will become a maid in another country..( not yet )

They will threaten that the value of your HDB will collapse.. ( no way )

They will threaten that your job will be gone..( already happened )

They will threaten that the trains will turn creaky ( already happened )

They will thretaen that idiots will become ministers ( already happened )

They will threaten that the region is very unstable ( has always been )

They will threaten that we will be overtaken ( already happen )

So, let me ask then:

Is it any different now?

Go ahead.. vote with courage.!!

Anonymous said...

http://www.tremeritus.com/2012/01/14/singapore-work-visa-applications-from-foreigners-increased-between-2010-and-2011/

Singapore work visa applications from foreigners increased between 2010 and 2011

Singapore company registration specialist, Rikvin, which also provides work visa and immigration services for foreign professionals, has observed a 25.7% increase in the number of Singapore work visa applications between 2010 and 2011, in spite of higher Ministry of Manpower (MOM) requirements effected in July 2011.

Although higher Singapore Employment Pass (EP) requirements have been in effect since 1 July 2011, Rikvin saw the number of Singapore EP applications between Jul to Dec 2010 and the corresponding period in 2011 increase by 22.5%.

Inclusive of renewals, the EP application numbers actually increased by 25.7% year-on-year (y-o-y) between 2010 and 2011. Over the same period, the number of fresh EP applications alone increased by 13.7%. On the other hand, the number of EP applications increased by only 5.2% between the first half year of 2010 and the corresponding period in 2011.

Commenting on the uptrend, Mr Satish Bakhda, Rikvin’s Head of Operations said, “It seems counter-intuitive to see an increase in the number of Singapore EP applications after the higher requirements have come into effect. However, the higher educational, experiential and salary bars have not deterred highly-qualified professionals, especially those from ailing European and US economies, from going after a chance to work or set up a company in Singapore.”

..............

http://www.tremeritus.com/2012/01/14/singapore-work-visa-applications-from-foreigners-increased-between-2010-and-2011/

Anonymous said...

You are really condemned if you are born male Singaporean in this part of the world. You serve 2 to 2 half years of NS + ICT reservists + IPPT + RT...all till you're almost 40.

In the meantime, NS men get ang pow before election to vote PAP to help PAPies million dollar salaries.

I hope singaporeans are aware that they can't survive in singapore in old age after they finished their 30 year hdb loan.

By then, it won't be funny anymore.

Anonymous said...

Yes!

So true!... even if oppostion wins and control parliament.. PAP will not co-operate and put up obstacles.

But they will not allow the country to slip into disaster where business will run away!

So, dont worry.

Anonymous said...

Led chiu chan said in the news it is not about th pay.

Ok .... fuck them lets pay them $1 to do the job

Anonymous said...

kee chiu chan said in the news it is not about th pay.

Ok .... fuck them lets pay them $1 to do the job

Anonymous said...

With the beautiful picture of that slanted cruise staring at me as I sipped my coffee, I thought.. perhaps had they paid the captain handsomely that ship may still be floating today.

The said...

/// Anonymous said...
With the beautiful picture of that slanted cruise staring at me as I sipped my coffee, I thought.. perhaps had they paid the captain handsomely that ship may still be floating today. ///

That's the problem. The captain was paid obscenely with more than 20 months of bonuses and yet this once-in-50-year event happened.

Weight Loss Buddies said...

Deputy Excellent Reverend Teo Chee Hean has recommended that concepts as a result of the panel researching ministerial incomes may be used.

Anonymous said...

60% think PAP is the best party available to be govt.

To a large extent, this is true.

But unfortunately best available does not mean the best, OK?

No fish, prawn also can what, even if it is lousy prawn.

http://www.cashadvancellc.com/ said...

I feel what you said. Workers have also the big factor.

unhappy :( said...

ministers are paid so much more but it doesn't seem like they are bringing Singapore to greater heights...

and they keep increasing taxes... -.- why not just reduce your salary by half, and Singapore doesn't have to rely on so much on taxes for revenue... (i know Singapore has one of the lowest tax rates)

if Singapore is super rich, as in the national treasury, i won't even care if ministers are earning billions or whatsoever; but the truth is otherwise and i don't like how they resort to increasing taxation (bad strategy imo) instead reflecting on themselves...

no grudge against ministers but please remember your job is to serve the people not yourselves... i would rather attitude over efficiency (in response to MM Lee's famous quote about how high pay is needed to bring out the best in ministers...)