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'Singaporean $2,800, Malaysian-Indian $1,200': Malaysian says he got lowballed by prospective Singapore employer

'Singaporean $2,800, Malaysian-Indian $1,200': Malaysian says he got lowballed by prospective Singapore employer
PHOTO: Screengrab/Reddit/SingaporeRaw

A Malaysian Indian man recently took to social media to share his negative experience after he enquired about a job listing by a company in Singapore. 

On May 26, the jobseeker posted on Facebook sharing screengrabs of his WhatsApp conversation with the human resources manager of the engineering firm.

The sales engineer job opening, posted on May 18, showed that the company is offering a salary that ranges from $2,800 to $4,500.

Although the job ad didn't mention the company is hiring foreigners for the role, the HR manager suggested that the candidate apply for the job via an agent.

The jobseeker then proceeded to ask: "How much do you offer for this role?" 

The HR manager, who's aware of the candidate's nationality and race, replied: "For Singaporean $2,800, Malaysian Chinese $1,500, Malaysian Indian $1,200."

Apart from the skillsets mentioned in the job description, the role also required the candidate to hold a bachelor's degree or a diploma certificate.

When the job applicant pointed out that he has the necessary qualifications for the role, the other party replied: "So what."

"I only need permanent resident or Singaporean," the hirer added.

Upset by his behaviour, the jobseeker ended the conversation and called him out for his discriminatory behaviour.

AsiaOne has contacted both parties for comment. 

Although his Facebook post was private, a copy of it was shared on Reddit and went viral.

Some Redditors called the Singapore employer's behaviour appalling, with one even claiming "it gives us Chinese a bad name".

Despite the outrage, others said they were not surprised that such discriminatory hiring practices still exist in Singapore, especially in small medium enterprises. 

No tolerance of workplace discrimination in Singapore

Introduced in 2014, the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) protects employees by enforcing a set of requirements on employers such as no discrimination based on age, gender, nationality or race.

The ministry of manpower takes a serious view of discrimination at the workplace, said Minister of State for Manpower Gan Siow Huang in Parliament in 2021

Employment agencies that accumulate demerit points for breaches can also have their licence suspended or revoked. 

"In fact after we have reviewed the penalties, we did not see any repeat cases of discriminatory practices from companies that were found in breach," Gan said.

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