5 reasons why we need foreign workers in Singapore
“Get rid of the foreign workers! Don’t let them steal our jobs!” says almost every opposition party. But if you do that, you’re doing the precise thing that will kill us. Here are the 5 reasons:
5. Statistically impossible to run only on Singaporeans
Look, we always say we are a small country…so why are we so surprised when companies say there are not enough Singaporeans to hire? There are 3m Singaporeans (and not all of them need/want/fit/qualified to work) and over 200k registered companies here. Every company is demanding to hire the best and snapping up all the available manpower.
There just isn’t enough humans to go around. If we want to make the company’s life more difficult, they’ll just setup another office in another country and hire directly from there. Or move out of Singapore. Either way, Singaporeans lose out.
4. We all want to work in an MNC, but forget what “MNC” means
MNCs are “Multi-National Companies”, you can expect that they will have a multitude of nationalities in their companies. You’re welcome to join their family, but you have to allow their existing family to come along with them. If you deny them from bringing their global talent over, then they would just go somewhere that they are free to operate in.
3. Good companies want diverse teams
The best companies around the world are pushing for more diversity in their workforces. This means a mix of age, gender, sexual orientation, nationalities and disabilities. They recognise that skill, talent and heart are the things that matter to a business and not the the traits that cause stereotype. So it is very odd to tell a responsible company that they cannot hire a particular person just because
2. Healthy competition is good, but government must protect
Ok, some of you may not like this – but healthy competition is good. But that said, it doesn’t mean that the government has completely left it open for cheap labour to come in. There are foreign manpower quotas that businesses must maintain. There is the Fair Considerations Framework that they must comply with. And if they are found to breach business ethics, MOM can deny them the permit to hire foreigners.
Companies must also pay a foreign talent not much different than they would a Singaporean, this would prevent unfair competition where they are merely just cheap.
With all this in place, we have healthy competition in Singapore that could push us to achieve better whilst not being put in an unfair position.
1. It is for the greater good of all Singaporeans
At the end of it all, the whole point is that Singaporeans have access to a strong job market and that they get paid better. That’s it. Otherwise what is the point of inviting investments into Singapore? What is the point of setting up all the protection systems? Isn’t it just easier to just stop them all from coming in? Why are we putting so much effort?
The reason is simple – we want better lives, take care of our families better, be able to afford the things we want and to retire in peace. For all this to happen, we need better jobs, better pay so that we can have better work-life balance.