In a speech on Tuesday (Sep 8), Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing reassured businesses that Singapore will continue being open to top international talent.
Delivering a keynote address at a webinar organised by Standard Chartered Bank, Mr Chan’s comments come alongside increased scrutiny on the issue of foreign talent in Singapore that has left some companies anxious.
Mr Chan added that “we want the world’s best and brightest to be with Team Singapore,” and said that this will help augment Singapore’s skills and capability as these talents compete together with Singaporeans rather than against them.
This will also ultimately benefit Singaporeans rather than substitute or hurt them, he clarified, stating that “We will continue to bring in international talent in a calibrated manner as we have always done”.
He also explained that while the Government has tightened foreign worker policies, it is not a signal that it is turning away top international talent, but to show that it is “serious about discriminatory hiring practices”.
“All businesses, regardless of size or nationality, will have to play their part in building up the Singaporean workforce and giving Singaporeans a fair shot at the same job opportunities,” he said.
“We also like to encourage all our companies to have a diverse workforce, and not overly rely on any particular foreign country… this is just part of good business practices, and it will also help us in our social integration.
“That is how we will continue to keep Singapore relevant, as the preferred hub for companies”, Mr Chan added.
Last month, Mr Chan echoed similar sentiments as he said in an interview with Bloomberg Television’s Haslinda Amin that new rules to limit foreign worker visas won’t affect Singapore’s status as a business hub.
The country is trying to attract higher-skilled workers and will remain open to foreign talent, he added.
“We are making a move toward quality rather than quantity,” he noted. /TISG