Ban new foreign HR professionals?

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I refer to the article “Why is a local PMET IT job posted in JobStreet’s Indonesia webportal?” (theonlinecitizen, May 16).

It states that “Editor’s note – Just last year, Singapore’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan said in a meeting with Indonesia’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Ms Retno Marsudi, “We believe Indonesian universities and technical institutes will produce many graduates with digital skills and we are thinking of launching a scheme, in which Singapore companies – which are looking for talent – will be able to recruit talent here, deploy them here, and provide services for the rest of the world,”

He also said in his statement that Singapore government intends to launch a scheme to help the Singapore companies to employ Indonesians.

Some had hypothesised that Indonesians will be recruited to Singapore to work, while some have defended the foreign minister by stating that the workers would not be employed by the companies to work in Singapore but “here” in Indonesia where Dr Vivian was making the statement at.

With this job advertisement of a job opening in Indonesia’s job portal, one would have to consider whether the proposed scheme in 2016 is going to “steal our lunches” instead of helping Singaporeans to steal “others lunch”.”

After talking to Terry Xu, Chief Editor of theonlinecitizen, which has done numerous stories on foreigners competing with Singaporeans for jobs, having made enquiries in Singapore, Asean and Asian countries – there is apparently some “funny things” going on in HR recruitment – leading to discrimination against Singaporeans.

There may now be an urgent need to ban any new foreigners from being hired as  new HR professionals in companies’ HR and recruitment agencies.

This issue seems to be borne out in the foreign workforce statistics as employment passes grew from 187,900 in December 2015 to 192,300 in December 2016, and S-Passes from 178,600 to 179,700.

How is it possible that in a period of worsening economic downturn and rising citizens’ unemployment rate – foreign PMETs have continued their relentless increase in the workforce, despite a National Jobs Bank that is supposed to be “Singaporeans first” in PMET jobs?

Leong Sze Hian

About the Author

Leong
Leong Sze Hian has served as president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), invited to speak more than 200 times in over 30 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of Indonesia and Brunei. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.