Cost of living and healthcare costs brought up in Parliament: Ng Chee Meng

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The next labour chief Ng Chee Meng brought up workers’ concerns during debates on the President’s Address.

He raised issues workers had about the rising cost of living and how their needs were not sufficiently met, despite working hard.

He also said that workers worry about not having enough money for housing, retirement savings, healthcare and education for their children.

Mr Ng outlined the labour movement’s approach to ease the tension when it comes to these issues.

He first raised this question: “If they lose their jobs unexpectedly before retirement, will they have enough savings? Can they be assured that if they work hard, saved and contributed to their CPF (Central Provident Fund) savings, their basic needs of housing, children’s education, healthcare and retirement will continue to be taken care of?”

The first approach Mr Ng raised was that, “We need employers to maintain a nimble mindset and workers to help themselves by upgrading their work skills. Both employees and employers must stay relevant in the evolving business environment”.

He added that this is the most effective solution as wages increase with productivity and real wage increases help workers cope with the cost of living.

Mr Ng also spoke about the labour movement’s role and agenda in future.

“The labour movement will push the transformation agenda by working even closer with the Government and businesses,” he said, pushing businesses to make use of technology to improve operations and productivity.

Mr Ng shared his speech on Facebook and netizens shared their thoughts and questions.


obbana@theindependent.sg

48 COMMENTS

  1. This guy suddenly from being a minister is now champion of the labour. All wayang to please sinkies. If you are sincere, fight to remove GST for all basic items. If Malaysia can do away with GST, poor India can remove GST for 157 basic items and services, UK , Australia and NZ can do it, why you can’t? Make it 10% for luxury items like Rolex and perfumes. That is more fair way to collect tax. Now the poor guy in rental house and millionaire in bungalow pay 7% for same rice. Looks like what majority is paying is helping rich to safe more.

  2. By using more automation, more jobs will be lost. How to have more jobs if almost everything in automation . If in future, our fighter planes all by autopilots and controlled fully by computer, why we need Pilots anymore? If we deployed iron man as policemen and army, then why we need NS and even generals? Tiobo? My solution to your questions – simple, give back all CPF to the retirees and they will not be poor anymore. Reduce Or abolish GST , MP n ministers pay, reduce Budget to all Govt departments n PA, and finally reduce pay of president office and those perm Secretaries. We will save at least millions if not billions. Then we as singaporean would not be poor again. Tiobo, mr education minister? I believed you should go educate yourself more- make use of your $500 in your skill upgrade cost. Anyway, ur so called skill improvement sucks- full of old people- courses like – flower arrangements course, basic English course, simple computer course, did the course helpful? Or it was just another wastes of country reserve?

  3. Cost of living IS NOT the same as standard of living.
    Stop influx of cheap Professional foreigners is 1st target. Allow normal foreigners for our blue collar industries.
    Reduce GST to 5% & 0% for basic goods. Increase GST of luxury goods to 12% like branded bags, luxury cars, pte hospitals etc. the rich can pay if they want. COE for 2nd car & more must pay premium.

  4. how did he becomes a minister, thru backdoor, and handpick to do the job. dors he really understand the suffering of the poor, the jobless. why don’t cut their super high salary and reduce GST. has they sell thrir soul to the devil and forget about the citizens as human beings .

  5. This another one who is scheming to suck our savings and cpf (maybe not much left ). This shows so much dishonesty to squeeze us again. Where are the billions losses, where the accountability, the transparency for the losses? Not fit to be my government.