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Population White Paper must proceed or else?




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Population White Paper – Time to revisit an unpopular policy?

By: Leong Sze Hian

I refer to Calvin Cheng’s article in The Straits Times titled, “The Population White Paper – Time to revisit an unpopular policy?

“Since 2013, the Singapore Government has, out of political necessity, rolled back immigration and tightened the inflow of foreign labour; for all intents and purposes, it seems that the Population White Paper is on ice and few politicians now mention it in public.”

Non-citizens grew at almost double the rate of citizens?

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From 2013 to 2016 – the citizen population grew by 95,436 or only 2.9 per cent from 3,313,507 to 3,408,943.

In contrast, the non-citizen population grew by 112,685 or at almost double the rate, at 5.4 per cent from 2,085,655 to 2,198,340.

61,735 new citizens and 89,678 new PRs granted?

Moreover, we granted 61,735 new citizens and 89,678 new permanent residents (PRs) from 2013 to 2015.

S-Pass increased by 26%?

The total foreign workforce  increased by 136,400 or 10.8 per cent from 1,268,300 in December 2012 (note: the Population White Paper was released on 1 January 2013) to 1,404,700 in June 2016.

For S-Pass – it increased by 37,000 or 26.0 per cent from 142,400 to 179,400.

For Employment Pass – it increased by 15,800  or 9.1 per cent from 173,800 to 189,600.

For Work Permits – it increased by 66,500  or 7.1 per cent from 942,800 to 1,009,300.

Employment change has turned negative for locals in the last 21 months?

Also, since in the last 18 months from January 2015 to June 2016 – employment change was 49,000 foreign jobs against only 500 jobs for locals – does it mean that the employment change for locals for the last 21 months to September 2016 has turned negative?

If so, what is the negative employment change for Singaporeans?

Looking at the above statistics – how can we say that “Since 2013, the Singapore Government has … rolled back immigration and tightened the inflow of foreign labour”?

Do you agree with former NMP?

As to “Now, more than ever, Singapore needs to implement the manpower and population policies the White Paper proposed, together with plans for our economic future. There cannot be one without the other” – do you agree with the former NMP who wrote the subject article?

Send in your scoop to news@theindependent.sg 

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