In a parliamentary response yesterday (July 14), Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say reiterated the government’s pro-immigration stance by agreeing to continue taking in foreign labour and growing them at the current rate, which was 34,000 in 2014. Minister Lim Swee Say emphasised that he is comfortable with the current presence of the foreigner workforce and wanted to maintain it at one-third of the total workforce.
As of December 2014, the total foreign workforce stands at 1.35 million, with over 349,000 S and E pass holders taking up PMET jobs. Many Singaporeans have expressed unhappiness at the current number of foreigner PMETs who are offering discounted wages to employers under the Singapore Manpower Ministry’s legislated minimum wage of S$2,200 for S Pass holders and S$3,300 for E Pass holders. As all S and E pass holders have a minimum degree qualifications, Singaporean degree holders find it hard to compete with these foreign degree holders going at a cheap rate of S$2,200 a month.
In February 2013, more than 4,000 Singaporeans rallied against the Population White Paper announced by the ruling PAP Government to increase the population to 6.9 million through increasing the number of foreigners.
The Singapore Government has tacitly given up on increasing Singaporeans’ birth rate because doing so will require increasing pro-family measures and work-life balance like in the Scandinavian countries which Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong disagreed and simply said Singaporeans “are not like that”.
Lee Hsien Loong: Singaporeans choose not to have work-life balance. We are not like that.