Photo of Lee Hsien Loong from Straits Times

Speaking at the PAP conference today (Dec 4) to PAP activists, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was caught lying saying that there are more jobs available than there are Singaporeans to fill them.

“Singapore is still creating more jobs than there are Singaporeans to fill them at a time when other countries are struggling with high unemployment. Better jobs are also being created in the pipeline for Singaporeans in the future.”

The Prime Minister apparently did not refer to the latest unemployment statistics in November that saw retrenchment figures hitting 11,890 and the overall unemployment rising to 3% in 2016 from 2.8%. There are also more jobseekers than jobs available, according to the MOM report released in September 2016:

“For the first time since June 2012, there were more jobseekers than job openings during the second quarter. The number of seasonally adjusted vacancies fell from 50,000 in March to 49,400 in June, continuing a downward trend since March 2015. Coupled with the increase in unemployed people, the ratio of job vacancies to unemployed people fell to 93 openings per 100 seekers, compared to 103 in March.”

PM Lee Hsien Loong then claimed that household incomes “in other countries” have stagnated, but did not specify which country he was referring to. However a quick search on real income growth, shows that this is not true – at least for China (4.7%), Vietnam (5.4%) Hong Kong (1.4%), Taiwan (2.52%), Japan (2.14%), Australia (1.9%) and US (2.8%).

The Prime Minister then, again, made another baseless claim saying that other governments are cutting social safety nets without providing any example:

“In other countries, households have seen incomes stagnate for a long time. In Singapore, household incomes are going up across the board, even for the lower income and middle income. And while other governments are cutting social safety nets due to tight budgets, Singapore is strengthening its system.”