Ong Ye Kung - screenshot from Bloomberg video

In an interview with Bloomberg earlier this week, Education Minister Ong Ye Kung said that Singapore need more “foreign talents” as the local population is unable to churn out enough tertiary-educated graduates in the IT sector. The statement reignited Lee Hsien Loong’s controversial 6.9 million population policy that saw Singapore train network and infrastructures buckling under pressure.

The S$1.1 million-a-year Minister said the government will relax visa requirements for professionals, managers, engineers and technicians (PMET) jobs, while restricting work permit holders like construction workers:

“Grappling with an aging population and a shortage of high-tech workers, Singapore needs to bring in foreign talent in areas including software programming while the country rebalances its education system to meet future demands.”

Since 2007, Singaporean PMETs have been victimised by the government’s policy to import more foreign PMETs, while businesses dependent on manual labour workers are facing a manpower crunch. Local PMETs reported wage depression, growing overtime hours and higher redundancies after the influx. Singaporean jobseekers also ended up with a pool of low-wage job vacancies, with fresh graduates the hardest-hit as they lack working experience like foreigners do.

When questioned about the status of the next Prime Minister, Minister Ong Ye Kung blindly lied about the dictatorship having integrity and being non-corrupted. The PAP Minister said he still does not know who the next PM will be and said that the ministers still need more time to decide:

“We are working together closely, getting to know each other better. These things you can’t rush, but at some point in the not-too-distant future, we will be able to select a leader amongst us.”

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