Home News A drizzle of inflationary pebbles?

A drizzle of inflationary pebbles?

Author

Date

Category

- Advertisement -

By Mary Lee

Photo: Suhaimi Abdullah/Getty Images - Source
Photo: Suhaimi Abdullah/Getty Images – Source

A life-long lesson for the ruling People’s Action Party in how-not-to-win-votes has to be the White Paper on Population. Seen in calm hindsight, it was a typical policy paper, published after controlled feedback sessions with – one assumes – unemotional types eager to express an opinion to the government.

So the recent news of four to five per cent pay rises likely in all sectors, particularly services, and for Singaporean cleaners in the town councils counters all the negativity stirred up by the White Paper 6.9 million population target in 2030. These could also be pebbles in the calm pool, causing the water to ripple just as rocks of consumer price rises start to rain down. The drizzle of higher taxi fares has started. Will higher bus and train fares follow? We will know when a report is released tomorrow.
Particular mention of nursing and teaching assistants’ salaries rising have been made. So higher medical costs are not far off… Reason? Shortage of workers. Cause? Public outrage at the number of foreigners working in Singapore.
There has been a 129% increase in foreigners earning $2,200 and up in the past five years, according to manpower statistics. These figures do not include maids, construction workers or work permit holders who have no impact on housing and, except on weekends, put no pressure on public transport. It is the former group that has impacted on housing and transport. And no end to the pressure is in sight (they number just under 330,000 in June 2013).
Back in the ‘70s, when foreign investors were setting up factories in Singapore and needed masses of local women to work in their assembly lines, they provided buses to ferry them from and to designated spots in housing estates. Many still do. But employers of S-Pass or EP holders don’t have to do that because they are small enterprises.

So perhaps Singaporeans shouldn’t be targeting . Their angst should be directed elsewhere.
Incidentally, should the town council cleaning contractors claim they can’t get locals to sign up at $1,200 a month, they should pay the market rate for cleaners, instead of being allowed to hire foreigners for the unskilled job of cleaning (although I really like the cheerful young Bangladeshi who cleans my corridor once a month for $700!).

Please follow and like us:
Tweet
Share
- Advertisement -

NUS abruptly replaces Cherian George and Donald Low as webinar speakers

Update: According to a Raffles Hall Spokesperson: “The “Public Discourse Truth & Trust” webinar is organised by the Raffles Hall Association, which is an autonomous alumni group that is not governed by Raffles Hall and NUS.”   Singapore—Confusion ensued online when the National University...

Lee Suet Fern’s quilt sells for S$33,000 in charity auction

Mrs Lee Suet Fern, the wife of Mr Lee Hsien Yang, is well known for her handmade quilts and masks. Participating in a charity auction for Project Dignity, Mrs Lee donated one of her intricate quits – ‘Dignity Blooms’. Established in 2010, Project...

TOC’s chief editor and one of its writers on trial for alleging corruption in Cabinet

Singapore -- The chief editor of The Online Citizen (TOC) website Terry Xu and one of its  writers went to trial on Monday (Oct 26) for alleging corruption in the Singapore Cabinet. Xu, 38, is contesting one charge of defaming members of...
Please follow and like us:
Tweet
Share
close

Like and follow us

Follow Me
Tweet