Nothing like competition to make the PAP listen better

The Ministry of Manpower today announced the Fair Consideration Framework which will require employers to consider Singaporeans fairly for job vacancies before hiring foreigners (link: The Government has said that this is in response to the feedback it got from Our Singapore Conversation.

This suggestion for a better framework to protect the Singaporean worker however is not a new one. In 2009, about 2 years before the last General Election, I feedback to Mr George Yeo, then-Foreign Minister, that it is one thing to accept foreigners, but quite another to accept foreigners at the expense of Singaporeans.

I said that the quota policy implemented by the Ministry of Manpower then, which enables an employer to hire 25% foreign workers of their total workforce may unfairly disadvantage the Singaporean worker; and asked that a framework where an employer has to satisfy the Government that it is unable to hire a local person, before the employer is allowed to hire a foreigner be considered.

Mr Yeo then said in reply to my suggestion that complex policies actually create more bureaucracies and that he felt that it is better to have legislation which is not too complex to allow employers to make the actual decisions on who to hire and who not to (link:

I am glad that this Government has now, after a terrible showing at the last polls, is beginning to make an attempt to hear the people's voices better.


picture credit: Singapore Election Watch