Home News Unemployment in Singapore still shrinking but road to recovery still 'uneven'

Unemployment in Singapore still shrinking but road to recovery still ‘uneven’

A quick look at why Singapore needs to be optimistic but cautious.

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Singapore — Unemployment in Singapore continues to decline, observed Manpower Minister Tan See Leng on Thursday (Dec 6); but the road to recovery is still uneven.

In November 2021, the unemployment rate slipped to 3.2 per cent for residents, 3.5 per cent for citizens, and 2.5 per cent overall,  Dr Tan observed in a Facebook post on Thursday.

“This indicated that our labour market is recovering steadily, with the economy rebounding from the recession in 2020, and GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growing by 7.2 per cent last year,” he noted in his summation of the good, bad, and the unknowable.

Photo: FB screengrab/Tan See Leng

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He highlighted the recent relaxation on dining-out curbs and the opening of more Vaccinated Travel Lanes or VTLs and pointed out that these moves have allowed sectors hardest hit by the pandemic, such as air transport and food and beverage services, to begin ramping up capacity again.

As a result, “We expect hiring demand in domestic sectors to pick up with gradual relaxation of community measures,” he said.

But he cautioned that the path ahead is still an uneven one, paved with uncertainties.

He mentioned the spread of the Covid-19 Omicron variant throughout the world, with Singapore likely to see a new wave of cases in the coming weeks.

Dr Tan noted that businesses and workers “need to be adaptable and flexible as the Covid-19 situation changes.”

MOM and Workforce Singapore (WSG) “are here for employers and employees,” said Dr Tan.

He encouraged employers with hiring needs to consider a wider pool of job seekers and invest in topping up the skills of new hires.

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“The SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package provides generous support for employers to do so,” he noted.

… job seekers, he urged them to “keep an open mind to new opportunities.”

Job seekers who need support can approach WSG and NTUC’s Employment and Employability Institute for career matching services. More details can be found here.

The SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package was introduced in May 2020 to help the Singaporean workforce amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

When  Budget 2021 was announced, the package received an extra S$5.4 million boost to support the hiring of 200,000 locals and offer 35,000 traineeships.

It was reported that more than 146,000 people had acquired training opportunities or jobs through the SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package as of September 2021. /TISG

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Read related: Almost half of S’pore workers unsure about staying in their jobs the next 6 months

Almost half of S’pore workers unsure about staying in their jobs the next 6 months

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