Singapore’s economy will only turn worse if it depends on cheap FTs, an unskilled workforce doesn’t create wealth, short term benefits is translated to mass outflow

September 5th, 2012
Dr Ng acknowledged the worries of Singaporeans but also explained the implications of tightening the tap on foreigners. There are no perfect solutions. We have to make sure we have a tightening up but it’s not without cost. It will mean slower growth, and slower growth can also mean slower wage growth
To me, this is a ploy by PAP to use growth as a cover to ingrain into the public’s mind for their self-serving agenda as it is something paramount to the citizens. Growth means better life for the family and oneself. More money to spent on food , household, children, parents, holidays, nicer and better dwellings and so forth. Everybody is for growth. However, in today’s context, because the gahment can’t find better ways to grow the GDP and to make up for their short-comings, it has chosen to capitalize on it with the intention to have the effect to cause the citizens’ vision to blur out, throws them off balance and sway them away from the real issues they are discontented with.
Since around 20+ years ago, we agreed we need both foreign talents and foreign laborers. FOREIGN TALENTS to improve productivity and bring our intellect several steps higher and further. FOREIGN WORKERS for hard and laborious jobs like constructions, road building and etc which our workers won’t embark on. Would any of our ministers or us as parents want to see their/our children, if they are well educated, take up these jobs. If so, won’t the huge investments in them be put to waste, putting aside our own desire to see them make us proud
When the population becomes more educated, the result can only be that the supply of laborers diminishes. This is synonymous everywhere in the world. i have seen this happened in my life time. South east asian countries were the source of cheap labor to western countries in the 50s and 60s. Some still are today. Those days, it’s very common to see our relatives and friends to clamour for jobs that citizens of these western countries avoid because their population is much higher educated than ours.
To the credit of the past PAP leaders’ foresight and resolve and our hardworking forefathers, spore has since moved on and caught up with these western countries albeit not as equal since we started developing and now to a developed country status. Isn’t this the natural path of economics progression.
However this happy state changed suddenly and drastically in the past 10 yrs. PAP suddenly decided to create a high demand for and so now a huge influx of foreigners. The composition of this influx does not only include the 2 types foreigners earlier mentioned. it now embodies almost all levels and types of workforce. Out of the 2 millions in foreign workforce today, if i am not wrong and i stress i don’t have the true figures, the 2 categories only make up around 30%. It’s can’t be anything else but dishonest to make use of and lump these 2 groups with the rest of 70% to get us to believe we must have foreigners to grow and create jobs for us as the right and best solution for our country.
How these 70% wouldn’t affect the locals is beyond me. Without the ready vacancies to absorb the influx, some of our locals have to make way for them. If this rationale has no basis, i would be ready to accept that i am wrong if someone can convince me with facts to be otherwise. With this influx, we have since seen many negative and adverse effects socially and to our infrastructures. The most unforgivable is the MRT breakdowns. It had been running very well for all those years before the influx. The rest had been lamented with great displeasure incessantly in TRE, so i shall not repeat them. It’s even more cruel to be aware and do nothing to arrest the poor rich gap, stagnation of our salaries, loss of jobs to cheaper foreigners and the list goes on.
To have Lim Swee Say declaring how happy he is whenever he checks his CPF account and feels rich while, as the chief of labor, those who he is supposed to champion are worst off is nothing short of betrayal of his job. He is the salt to the workers’ wounds to say the least.
Other than FOREIGN TALENTS and FOREIGN WORKERS, we have abundance of our own people to support the prerequisites for growth. That’s why we are where we are today !!! Remember, as recent as 10 yrs ago, we were touted as among the most productive, better educated, higher level of know how and so forth in this part of the world. We were much admired and envied then. Can all this be possible if we didn’t have what it takes. In spite of all that we had achieved, the gahment keeps harping we need talent now,as if it’s something new, and makes it look like we have very little of it all of a sudden !!!!.
We do acknowledge the world has changed a lot since then. Globalization has changed the game that was played yesteryear. so we need to change too. however, IMO, our present leadership had not caught and flowed with this wind for whatever reasons it knows better. out of the 4 Asian tigers (South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and S’pore), only S’pore can’t maintain the surge forward without resorting to cheap labor at all levels since our technology and manufacturing capabilities are simply too far compared to them (except HK) and the developed world at large. to me, perhaps the gahment’s real reason is to use cheaper labor at all levels to compete better as it’s only alternative they can come up with. slowly and gradually, we would go down the difficult and slippery path to more hardships. We have to forgo those glorious days of the past reluctantly, until our gahment can finally realizes it’s short-sightedness and be brave enough to make drastic change in directions (very unlikely) or someone else has to takeover to make it happen.
My take is we still could have grown like before without resorting to cheaper labor cost if the present leaders have the foresight like our previous forefathers and leaders. It now chooses to lump everything together and announce vaguely we need foreigners and leave it at that. If i’m right, in their minds, it’s better not to explain and be honest with why. Otherwise they won’t be able to contain it. Better to confuse the citizens than to have to do damage control and risk lose their heavenly high salaries. They do not explain clearly why they do what do nowadays, whether it’s popular or not, unlike the past.
Cytix, let me explain to you, the mass influx of foreigners is like a diease, it might create short term gains for the employers by lowering cost, and in the end it is the top 10% that is in management that pockets the benefits, but the 90% will suffer because all FTs will remit their monies home, thus taking monies out of the domestic economy, in the end, Singapore Economy will pay a big price and everyone will suffer, that is the secret PAP does not want to tell you, because it fattens their pockets but not anyone else.
Personally I do not have any grudge against FTs, but when you import any Tom, Dick and Harry who does not become citizens, they do not spend in your domestic economy to grow the economy, they remit the money home, then you are the loser two times over.
My Assumptions;
What amount of money do you save by employing FTs?
Look at how many FTs in singapore, how much do they make?
How much do they remit home? To India, Phillipines, China, Indonesia?
How many are on work permit, employment E/S pass?
How much do they spend on the local economy?
How much our GIC/TH use the money they earn to invest overseas and what is the returns? 
That is the reason why Singapore is now in a very bad shape. Outflow is huge, Inflow almost nothing now.
– Contributed by Oogle. 


Slowdown will cause many to have cashflow problems in Singapore

Wednesday, Sep 05, 2012
The Business Times

By Siow Li Sen
SINGAPORE – More firms are having cash-flow problems – with more than half the payments being delayed. The situation will only get worse as the slowdown begins to bite.
Only seven bills out of 20 were paid on time, with prompt payment hitting a record low of 37.3 per cent in the second quarter, said the Singapore Commercial Credit Bureau (SCCB) yesterday.
The previous low of 39 per cent was recorded in Q2 2011.
This is a sharp reversal from Q1 when nine bills out of 20 were settled promptly.Local firms’ payment performance has taken a turn for the worse after hitting an all-time low in payment delinquency last quarter, said SCCB.
Payment delays have hit a record high of 53.8 per cent, a sharp 11.9 percentage-point increase from the previous quarter, it said.
“The positive correlation between weak market performance and poor payment behaviour is clear to us by now,” said Audrey Chia, D&B Singapore’s chief executive.
SCCB operates under D&B Singapore.
“But more worryingly, we also see a noticeable trend of firms making fewer partial payments to their suppliers last quarter as company profits are being undermined by poorer cash flows,” said Ms Chia.
Fewer firms are making partial payments compared with the preceding three quarters. Partial payments have fallen by 4.6 percentage points to 8.9 per cent. This marks the second lowest partial payments since a year ago in Q2 2011 when partial payments made up only 7.9 per cent of total commercial transactions.
As global economic woes persist, companies are bracing themselves for more bad news.
On Monday, reports said purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for China and other Asian exporters slid last month as new export orders from the eurozone declined.
The HSBC-Markit gauge for China showed factory activity shrinking at its fastest pace in more than three years, mirroring the official PMI’s slide into contraction zone. Taiwan and South Korea also saw contraction, while Singapore’s barometer of industrial activity slid further into the sub-50 contraction zone to a reading of 49.1 in August, down from July’s 49.8.
The bureau looked at 200,000 payments in the quarter under review, said Eugene Tan, SCCB manager, product development & marketing.
Prompt payment is classified as one in which at least 90 per cent of total bills are paid within the agreed payment terms – usually 30 days, but could stretch to 90 days. Slow payment is when more than 50 per cent of total bills are paid later than the agreed credit terms.
On a sectoral basis, in Q2, the retail sector fared the worst, living up to its reputation as being the worst paymaster with the highest proportion of slow payments at 62.4 per cent – a whopping 13.3 percentage point increase from Q1, 2012.
Weaker consumer spending and slackening external demand have hit hard on the retail sector, said SCCB.
The wholesale sector, traditionally the best paymaster among the industries, has experienced its worst payment record in the history of SCCB’s payment analysis.
Owing to a deterioration of wholesalers in the chemicals, petroleum and electronics businesses, the sector experienced more than 50 per cent slow payment transactions for the first time. At 50.9 per cent, the sector registered the highest jump in payment delays, up 14.5 percentage points from the preceding quarter.