Minister-in-charge of population Josephine Teo yesterday (Nov 3) told state media reporters the government is launching a new campaign to “help young couples be baby-ready”. The millionaire minister however did not announce anything constructive for the new campaign and instead talked her way out rehashing existing policies:
“There are practical ways for the Government to help young couples be baby ready – including helping them get their flats sooner. Singapore provides a good environment for people to start families. We have stepped up our efforts in terms of making housing more readily accessible. The other aspect that has been ramped up a great deal would be the early childhood education…I think the question is really how we can make sure that at every juncture, we look at the changing needs of couples. In today’s context, one area that comes out very strongly is the need for flexible work arrangements.”
As of 2018, Singapore’s birth rate is currently the world’s lowest at 1.16. High cost of living, excessive overtime work, low purchasing power and exorbitant housing prices in Singapore are the primary causes behind the low birth rate. The
The Singapore government however focused on propaganda, twisting terms and social indicators to fit their narrative, instead of actually working on measures that bring tangible results like increasing wages and shortening working hours in Singapore. Singaporeans clock the world’s highest working hours at an average of 45.2 hours per week, according to official stats.
The low birth rate problem has since exacerbated the ageing population, and the government’s alternative strategy to boost population by bring new immigrants has been proven to be unrelated to increasing birth rate. In the 18 years period from 2000, the Singapore population jumped 44% to 5.79 million in 2018 from 4 million. The increased in immigrants however worsened the ageing population as new immigrants, despite coming from third world countries with high birth rate, are not giving birth in Singapore either.