Singapore (PRWEB) August 18, 2011
Satish Bakhda's comment follows the recent announcement by the Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during his National Day Rally speech, to tighten up the entry of mid-level foreign workers to rein in the foreign workers inflow, which is perceived as an unrestrained competition by Singaporeans . The details of the changes were unveiled by the Ministry of Manpower today. Starting next January, new applicants for Q1 and P2 employment passes will have to earn higher minimum salaries.
Q1 pass holders, the lowest rung of employment passes, will have to earn at least S$3,000, up from the current S$2,800.The qualifying salary for P2 employment pass will go up from S$4,000 to S$4,500, while qualifying salary for P1 passes remain unchanged at S$8,000. The present salary threshold for employment passes became effective only this July.
The changes will apply to existing employment pass holders over the next one to two years when their passes are due for renewal. Those whose passes expire before January, next year, will enjoy renewal with two-year validity, based on the criteria before the July revisions. Pass holders who need to renew between January and June, next year, will receive a one-year renewal, also on current criteria.
Satish Bakhda says, “Foreigners who wish to work in Singapore will have to face a tougher challenge. After the economic recovery we have observed a slight jump in the number of Singapore work visa applications we process for our clients. Now that the bar has been raised, we do not anticipate any decline in the number of Employment Pass applications, but the process is going to be even tougher. It must be noted that salary is not the only criteria, the MOM also takes note of the institutions were the applicants qualified from, it must be of considerable standard and also older workers should draw higher salaries proportionate to their experience and skills.”
Satish Bakhda adds, “The revisions has been made to alleviate the concerns of the local workforce. Despite the fact that there is almost full employment, there is a growing concern among the Singaporeans who feel that they are unduly disadvantaged in the job market because of competition from foreign talents who accept lower salaries. Now the salary threshold has been raised, employers especially the SMEs will have to face a rise in business cost, however it will be limited to at most 2% and the forecasted economic growth should come to the rescue of the employers.”
He further sums up saying, “Given the level playing ground in terms of salary, employers bringing in foreigners will seek higher quality and productivity, this means the locals will be competing with the cream of the crop therefore we may foresee a very highly competitive job landscape. Irrespective of whether a foreigner or a Singaporean now the test is for talents and skills, and the going will get tougher in the coming years as the competition stiffens. So everybody in the workforce must have to brazen up and prove their mettle.”
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