IMPACT – MEDIUM
What is the change? Singapore has released a report on labor market trends in 2016.
What does the change mean? Singapore’s economy continued to grow slowly, with modest growth in local employment, while foreign employment contracted for the first time since 2009. Median income for citizens continued to grow, though at a slower rate than in past years. The annual average unemployment rate remained low, but increased from 1.9 percent in 2015 to 2.1 percent.
BAL Analysis: Singapore has worked to encourage employers to localize their workforces and restructure toward an economy that is lean on manpower. The report shows that the total number of employed persons in Singapore hit 3,672,600 in December 2016. Of that number, 2,279,700 were locals and 1,393,000 (not counting foreign domestic workers) were foreigners. Locals made up 66.4 percent of the Singaporean workforce (not counting domestic workers) and foreigners made up 33.6 percent. These percentages are roughly on par with 2015 levels and reflect the two-to-one local-to-foreigner ratio that Singapore stressed as a key workforce benchmark in the 2016 budget speech.
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