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Expat Tradesmen in Singapore

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Expat Tradesmen in Singapore

Postby Pevans » Thu, 12 May 2005 9:38 am

Does such a creature as a Expat tradesman exist in this country and if so what are they doing. I moved here with my wife a few months back hoping to evenutally find a job here in SG.

I served a four year apprenticeship in Instrument /Electrical fitting back in the mid 90's. Since then been working as mainly a Instrument Technician in the Oil and Gas industry..

I've been looking out for a job here for the past month or so but all there seems to be on offer is either Engineers jobs or Tech's job. But when you look into the experience needed to call yourself a Tech, its far less than what a average expat tradesman from Aus would have.

So i'm taking it i would lie somewhere in between Engineer and tech in SG , but does anybody recruit for such people here ??? And how much do they get paid ?? From what i've seen so far i wouldn't be able to pay a car loan with a months wage as a tech in this country never mind the rent..

Please help !

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Re: Expat Tradesmen in Singapore

Postby sundaymorningstaple » Thu, 12 May 2005 1:24 pm

Pevans wrote:Does such a creature as a Expat tradesman exist in this country.......

I have only seen a few "Tradesmen" get jobs here in Singapore. This was some 8-10 year ago when a bunch of Aussies with specialists skills in a type of concrete slipform construction was used to build something down around CHIJMES if I remember correctly. Was a big problem with immigration authorities at the time if I remember correctly.

The word tradesman is your problem. You are NOT a tradesman in Singapore you are a Technician. You have to remember that here in Singapore you have to read between the lines. Most companies here will advertise for a position of Engineer when all they want is a Technician. When you ask them for what level of education is required they will tell you a diploma or degree. It's a face thing. Everybody here is hung up on titles and ties (e.g., shirt & tie). When asked if the position will require signing off of something usually the answer is no because really all they are looking for is a technician not really an engineer. That's why salaries seem to be so low for engineers in singapore. The majority of them are not really engineers but technician with fancy names.

As a qualified tradesman, you will find it very difficult to find something that will pay you an amount that (even with the difference in taxes, etc.) will be even close to what you were making in Oz. You will not have any true Union Representation here either. Therefore, it is purely an employers market. They can also get degree holders from India, Phillipines, Malaysia, PRC for half the cost of an expat who will work as technicians (even with 'engineering' experience in their home countries). Here they seem to think that most experienced technicians/engineers know everything after 2 years!

I don't want to be discouraging but these are the realities here.....

Good Luck,

THE sms

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