According to the latest employment statistics by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), the unemployment rate for Singaporeans continues to be at it’s 8-year-low at 3.2%. More permanent residents are employed than Singaporeans, bringing the combined unemployment statistic at 3.1%, while foreigners get more employment opportunities than locals, with a total unemployment rate of 2.1%.
The MOM did not explain why foreigners are more employable than Singaporeans. Singapore’s unemployment rate is considered relatively high considering that the country has no Minimum Wagem, stringent employment protection laws or better mandatory benefits like overtime commonly seen in first world nations like Australia.
Retrenchment rate is also at it’s all-time-high at 3,600 from Jul to Sep. This figure is likely to worsen in the next quarter as a total of 300 retrenched employees from state media company Singapore Press Holdings as previously announced.
There are also lesser jobs available, as total employment (excluding maids) fell by 2,500 in 3 months to 3,658,300 in Sep.
The Singapore government reported that GDP is increasing and will likely reach 2-3% by year end, however unemployment rate continues to worsen. Just earlier this week, three local universities – NUS, NTU and SIT – reported that the number of fresh graduates turning to part-time jobs has increased by 50%.
Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say did not comment on the worsening employment figures.