In the present uncertain global world when most of the countries are adopting inward policies not amenable to foreign workers, Singapore has emerged a beacon of hope for them as they continue to flourish in the country. This has been reiterated by S Iswaran, Trade and Industry Minister of Singapore.
He said,“Whether as a transitional tool or something more long term, Singapore will continue to need foreign manpower to complement its economic and population needs. Despite the recalibration in foreign manpower policies over the years, the Republic has remained open and the size of the imported workforce has continued to grow.”
The Minister was speaking at the press conference at the launch of the Committee on the Future Economy report.
Responding to a reporter who noted little mention of foreign manpower policy in the report and asked if Singapore’s stance is unchanged, Iswaran emphasized that whether a worker is Singaporean or foreigner, the emphasis is on productivity and value-add.
“The role of foreign talent here is complementary — even as the Republic invests in developing the skills of Singaporeans, there may be gaps in the market,” he said.
While the committee’s report did not dwell on this issue, Mr Iswaran said this is because the Government’s approach is “deeply embedded”. “It is a policy that is dynamic to the changes in the market, and we’ll continue to observe it,” he added.
It is pertinent to mention that foreign employment in Singapore has continued to grow over the years, though at a slower pace. The figure of foreign workers in Singapore was estimated to be about 1,393,000 in December of last year