The plunging Malaysian ringgit is now not only the subject of memes and jokes on Twitter and Facebook. The ringgit to Singapore dollar rate is affecting the market too.

Since the reopening of the Malaysia-Singapore borders, Singaporeans have been flocking to Johor Bahru’s bazaars and supermarkets to take advantage of the cheap ringgit while workers are leaving Johor to work in Singapore and earn Singapore dollars.

The ringgit was trading at RM3.16 to the Singapore dollar yesterday. It has a two-fold impact on Malaysia. As the workers are leaving Johor to work in Singapore, hourly rates are rising in Malaysia, and employers are worried.

Malaysians on Twitter are urging their friends not to work for local firms, describing them as “crap jobs” that pay little.

Some users are saying that Malaysian youngsters should cross the Causeway or go “international” and seek employment where firms are eager to hire young people.

According to them, the ringgit to Singapore dollar rate as well as the ringgit’s weakness against the US dollar will benefit people who acquire jobs abroad.

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In one tweet, the user says, “Forget about cheapskate local companies, apply international instead. They are hiring like CRAZY!”

Nevertheless, in Johor, the reopening has caused a serious shortage of workforce in several areas of the economy.

It appears that these sectors in Malaysia are facing the ‘great resignation’ since Malaysians are abandoning their jobs in Johor, for example, to work in Singapore because of the significantly greater pay when converted to ringgit.

According to news sources, hotels are experiencing personnel shortages, with many employees departing for Singapore.

The majority of hotels employ an average of 50% of their workers. Some people are unable to execute banquets and other gatherings at full capacity because of a lack of resources.

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Last week, Resorts World in Singapore held a walk-in interview at a hotel in Johor to hire personnel for its Sentosa casino, and the lines were long, causing concern among Johor Bahru business owners.

Another consequence is the increase in workers’ hourly pay in Johor, which went from RM5-RM6 to RM10, and interns from hotel training institutions who were previously paid RM400 a month were offered double that amount.

Many employees are coming to Singapore since there is a huge demand for their services and the compensation is better. Food establishments in Singapore are also experiencing a labour shortage and are prepared to pay very high wages to hire Malaysians.

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