According to the latest employment statistics by the Ministry of Manpower today (June 13), Singaporeans clocked an average of 45.2 hours a week for the first quarter of March. By annual calculation, Singapore workers clocked 2,350 hours on average a year, the highest in the world beating every OECD nation. Japan clocked 1,719 hours a year while South Korea clocked 2,113 hours.
The result comes as no surprise as Singapore’s MOM also set the longest maximum hours one can work at 72 overtime hours a month on top of the 44 hour work week – also the longest in the world. Japan’s maximum hours is at 45 hours overtime over 40 hour work week, while South Korea’s maximum overtime hours is 12 hours overtime per week.
The spillover effect of long working hours also resulted in Singapore having the lowest birth rate in the world at 1.20 in 2016, lower than Japan’s 1.41 and South Korea’s 1.26.
There is no plan to reduce working hours in Singapore as Minister of Manpower Lim Swee Say never once mentioned about long working hours in Singapore.
Also reported today is the worsening long-term unemployment figure which raised 0.1% to 0.8%. The unemployment rate of Singapore citizens is still at its 7-year-high at 3.5%. The total number of jobs also reduced by 6,800, to 3.67 million – the smallest workforce Singapore have in 8 years.
MOM also reported that there are 81 jobseekers for every 100 jobs, proving that the country is overpopulated with not enough jobs around. However, the Singapore government has continued to import more foreigners, with the population having increased 10% over 5 years to 5.7 million in 2016.