Free competition in the labour market, without safeguards, will continue to push down wages. With outsourcing of many types of work, the wages of the contract workers have now fallen below the subsidence level. Many family now needs two or three jobs to earn enough to survive.
Many countries solve this problem by introducing a “minimum wage”. I suggest that the minimum wage in Singapore should be SGD 10 an hour. If this wage is applied to cleaners, shop attendants and other low income jobs, there will be sufficient Singaporeans who are keen to accept these jobs - rather than remain unemployed.
We should continue to control the number of foreign workers who are allowed to take these jobs. The employer should be required to provide acceptable standard of accommodation and medical benefits to these worker. This will increase the cost of these foreign workers, and reduce the attraction of their “lower cost”, as compared to local workers. The foreign worker’s levy can continue to be levied.
If we need foreign workers to increase the pool of manpower, let us welcome them as long term immigrants. If they bring their family here, they will have to face the same high cost of living and cannot depress the wages fo local workers. This will be the subject of a separate discussion.
A minimum wage policy may mean that the customers have to pay more for these services. But, the increase may not be as large as feared. The wages of the workers is only one component of total cost. The other components are rental, profit and management salaries. I expect that, in a competitive market, these other components will fall to more reasonable levels, before the charges to the customers are raised.
Some people argued that higher wages will fo force businesses to locate to other countires. This argument does not hold water for the domestic service sector, which will be an important source of employment for the local people.
Anyway, we do not need many businesses in Singapore to create employment for foriegn and local workers who earn below the minimum wage. The large number of foriegn workers working in Singpaore at the depressed wages will create social problems that are not fully realised at this time.
I like to ask for support for a minimum wage policy in Singapore. This is social justice and fairness. It is for the long term good of our society.
Tan Kin Lian
Minimum wage should be $8 per hour
Someone told me that $10 an hour may be too high. He suggested that a minimum wage of $8 per hour may be more acceptable for a start. This gives $1,280 a month for 8 hours X $8 X 20 days = $1280. I agree.
Results of Poll
Poll, "Should a minimum wage policy be implemented in Singapore?"
Number of replies: 173
Not sure: 7%
- ► 2013 (306)
- ► 2012 (1270)
- ► 2011 (1873)
- ► 2010 (2369)
- ► 2009 (1655)
12/07 - 12/14
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- Guide - how to lodge a complaint on credit linked ...
- Speaker Corner, 13 Dec 2008 Speech by TKL
- Rejection of travel insurance claim
- Petition Form for Elected Presidency
- HK: Minibond losers back on the street
- HK investors protest over mis-selling of Lehman-li...
- Speaker's Corner, 13 Dec 08, 5-7 pm
- SCMP:Troubled minibond investor attempts suicide
- Financial Talk and Counselling - Sat 13 Dec 2-5 p....
- Citigroup and UBS Agree to Buy Back Risky Securiti...
- Who should be retrenched first?
- A broad based approach towards re-training
- Hong Kong banks repay 30 million HK dollars in min...
- Why we need a minimum wage policy in Singapore
- Cheating - as defined in Penal Code of Singapore
- HK: Lehman losers eye US class action move - press...
- HK: DBS sued over investment losses
- SCMP:60 investors get HK$30m from banks on minibon...
- Mistrust of financial products
- Petition to Town Council - arranged by Gilbert Goh...
- Election into public office
- Survey results - consumer association for financia...
- Financial Services Consumer Association - Survey
- Giving a fair deal to policyholders
- Salaries of CEOs of Motor Companies
- Association to educate consumers on financial serv...
- SCMP:Gripes about banks double, but over what?
- Dealing with an adviser - what to look out for
- The Online Citizen celebrates its second anniversa...
- Adviser is required to disclose and explain the ch...
- Offer of 30% compensation
- The CDO time-bomb
- Spare a though for the foreign workers in Singapor...
- Two sources of loss on your investment
- ▼ 12/07 - 12/14 (35)
- ► 2007 (1803)
- ► 2006 (696)
- ► 2005 (159)