Photo of Beh Swan Gin from sgtatler

Speaking at the Economic Development Board (EDB)-Straits Times forum yesterday (May 28), EDB chairman Beh Swan Gin told Singaporeans to grow the “Singaporean core within the workforce” by importing foreigners because Singaporeans are also foreigners at one time.

“Ourselves, our parents, our grandparents, we were foreigners also at one time. That’s our heritage.”

The EDB chairman then boast that his government agency will now “create billion-dollar businesses” in Singapore and that Singapore businesses should “accept the lack of a domestic market”. Beh Swan Gin also commented that Singapore entrepreneurs should not aspire to be like Google or Facebook, and rather lay their sights on being “regional business enablers”.

Singapore’s influx of foreigners between 2007 to 2012 depressed wages and diminished employment opportunities. Employers in Singapore became inefficient due to the ease and availability of cheap hires, and the country’s productivity has been declining steadily since its peak in 2000.