More local PMETs in “jobs growth”, but no no. of jobs?

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Since the 3-year average shows more PMET jobs growth went to locals – why is the actual number of PMET jobs growth not given?

I refer to the article “Parliament: Local PMETs facing brighter job prospects, says Lim Swee Say” (Straits Times, Nov 6).

It states that “The job front is perking up for professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs), with a bigger share of them forming the local workforce.

The proportion of locals being added to the pool of PMETs has also grown while the real incomes of workers who are in full-time jobs have risen. Real income takes into account inflation.

Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say painted this optimistic picture in Parliament on Monday (Nov 6) when he gave an update on the outcome for workers of the Government’s efforts to transform the economy to be more innovative, productive and manpower-lean, and help PMET residents – comprising Singaporeans as well as permanent residents – adapt to changes.

Mr Lim gave figures to underline the positive changes.

This year, PMETs make up 56.1 per cent of the resident workforce, compared with 53.5 per cent in 2014.

This growth rate is higher than that of the previous three years, Mr Lim said.

Residents also make up a bigger proportion of the net employment growth for PMETs.”

As to “A three-year moving average shows that out of every four extra PMETs employed in the past three years, three were locals. Five years ago, the figure was lower: one local out of every two extra PMETs” – Why is it that there was no mention of the actual number of PMET jobs created in the last three years?

If we account for the estimated 90,000 new PRs and 60,000 new citizens granted in the last three years – how many of the jobs to locals went to Singaporeans?.

With regard to “In the first eight months of this year, these programmes (Adapt and Grow) to help workers adapt to rapid technological changes helped more than 16,000 workers land new jobs.

More than half of them (58 per cent) are PMETs, nearly three in 10 are older than 50, and around three in 10 were long-term unemployed who had been jobless for more than six months.

Of the PMET jobseekers who seek help from Workforce Singapore and Employment and Employability Institute, about 65 per cent are placed in jobs.

Recent schemes announced along these lines include the SkillsFuture Series to help working adults learn industry-relevant skills in eight areas related to the industry transformation maps.

There is also the Manpower Ministry’s Capability Transfer Programme, which will help companies bring in foreign experts to train locals in advanced skills that are not yet prevalent in Singapore” – All these piecemeal statistics may arguably by quite meaningless, from the overall perspective of how many of the “jobs growth” actually went to Singaporeans?

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.