Singapore

3 in 4 PMET jobs in growth sectors filled by Singaporeans, PRs

Manpower Minister says Government has helped Singaporeans secure good jobs through various measures

About three in four white-collar jobs in growth sectors such as healthcare, finance and insurance services, and information and communications are filled by Singaporeans and permanent residents (PRs).

Releasing the data in Parliament yesterday, Manpower Minister Josephine Teo said the Government has helped Singaporeans secure good jobs through job creation, motivating workers to upgrade their skill sets, promoting fair hiring and investing in education and training.

She said: "To help Singaporeans, we must make every effort to keep up these efforts instead of focusing narrowly on displacing PRs and foreigners in our workforce.

"That is a zero-sum game which will cause companies to rethink locating their high-value activities in Singapore. The end result will not serve Singaporeans' best interests."

Mrs Teo was responding to Workers' Party chief Pritam Singh, who had asked about the number of PMET (professional, manager, executive and technician) jobs held by foreigners and PRs because of an insufficient number of qualified Singaporeans to fill them.

He also asked the Manpower Ministry to name industries that find it difficult to attract or hire Singaporeans for PMET jobs, the results of initiatives aimed to help more locals get into such roles, and how the Government ensures Singaporeans pick up the necessary skills from PRs and foreigners who are currently in the positions.

Mrs Teo said the ministry works closely with agencies to place locals in PMET jobs in sectors with good growth potential. She noted that the Adapt and Grow initiative has helped over 48,000 local job seekers get placed in PMET roles over the past three years. Workforce Singapore and industry agencies also placed over 10,000 mid-career locals in PMET jobs in growth sectors between July 2017 and last year.

Results from professional conversion programmes have been encouraging, she added, with about nine in 10 programme participants remaining employed two years after placement.

About seven in 10 participants earned higher salaries than before, Mrs Teo said.

Citing the latest Graduate Employment Survey for the 2019 batch, she said about nine in 10 university and polytechnic graduates who entered the labour force were employed within six months.

"Mature workers who have been in the workforce for some time have also made good progress," said Mrs Teo.

She noted that it was remarkable how workers aged 40 and over with a local diploma or degree have exceeded expectations by filling up more PMET job places than expected.

Only one in four were expected to fill the roles, based on their qualifications, but about one in two are currently in these positions.

Employment