SINGAPORE - Manpower matters were the most talked about issues this year on the platforms of government feedback arm Reach.
In particular, the tighter restrictions placed on the hiring of foreign workers dominated Reach's feedback channels, according to a press statement from Reach. Much was said about the government's move to tighten the Employment Pass (EP) framework, with some worried that the small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) would not be able to adapt quickly enough to keep up with the tightened measures.
Others, however, wanted to see a further tightening of the EP criteria to reduce Singapore's reliance on foreign manpower, and for more attention to be paid to grooming local talent.
Many contributors also voiced frustrations over unfair hiring practices of some companies which they said favoured foreigners, and questioned the dominance of foreigners in some industries such as banking and IT.
Overall, Reach received more than 43,000 feedback inputs up to November this year. Of these, 4,300 were related to manpower issues, while the topics of transport and population and immigration received 2,900 and 2,800 inputs, respectively. Reach gathers feedback online and through face-to-face conversations, dialogues, forums and focus group discussions.
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