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Raising the Pay Levels for Employment Passes

Relocating, travelling or planning to make Singapore home? Discuss the criterias, passes or visa that is required.
AngMoG
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Postby AngMoG » Thu, 25 Apr 2013 2:42 pm

zzm9980 wrote:
AngMoG wrote:Sadly, the only place my employer wants to relocate me to is Hong Kong, and without any raise to boot.


If you're single, I think you can live much better in HK on the same salary as you could in Singapore. HK has affordable housing options of all sizes in most areas. You can get a nice 1bedroom 400sq/ft in mid-levels for less than you'd pay to rent a 3-room HDB in ulu ulu here. And if you prefer something Ulu Ulu instead of being on the Island, you can get something nice in a place like Tsuen Wan *and* a car for still less than you'd pay for that Ulu Ulu HDB in Singapore :P


I am not single though (I have to say "fortunately" :) ), and we already checked - my wife's specialty is not in demand there at all. Going down from double-earner to single-earner is a no-go (not earning enough for that).

For singles though, HK may have more to offer, I agree.

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Postby AngMoG » Thu, 25 Apr 2013 2:55 pm

zzm9980 wrote:Here are the only 'facts' out there, every other quote is just from analysts speculating:


One can try to interpret all kinds of things here, but at this point that will be speculation indeed. The thing that is a bit "scary" (for the economic situation) is that this July's change would affect "1 in 2" S-Pass holders.

I think safe to say that the $3,000 minimum will go up, since all signs point that way, including the raising of the minimum for S-Pass. I reckon by about $500.

What is unsettling is that we can be sure that end 2013 and mid 2014 will see additional tightening, but that there are no details yet. I am still "safe" until end 2014, but after that?

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Re: Raising the Pay Levels for Employment Passes

Postby JR8 » Thu, 25 Apr 2013 5:29 pm

Barnsley wrote:According to the local news outlets the salary levels are going up again in the near future.

Apparently its due to stagnant wages for graduates coming out of the local educational establishments.


Nothing in the policy seems to address the apparent issue at hand: Why do MNC's choose to hire FT over locals? Rather than addressing that, they are instead 'taxing' MNCs by enforcing higher pay levels. In some respects it seems short-sighted, as it prompts MNCs to consider moving lock-stock+barrel to an alternative SEA location.

Who will the locals work for when the last MNC 'ups and offs'?

Is there an election coming or something?

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Re: Raising the Pay Levels for Employment Passes

Postby Strong Eagle » Thu, 25 Apr 2013 10:43 pm

JR8 wrote:Nothing in the policy seems to address the apparent issue at hand: Why do MNC's choose to hire FT over locals?


I might take a stab at this one. Let's consider the 'M's in PMET, the Managers. I've seen far too many 'managers' assume that this means that they don't actually have to do anything themselves, nor do they ever need to make a decision. Instead, they view their job as a conduit, telling their reports what to do, and reporting to their superiors what is being done. It never occurs to the average 'manager' that they are just an extra (and unproductive) step in a communications chain that would do better without them.

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Postby Wd40 » Thu, 25 Apr 2013 11:36 pm

Its clear what the gahmen is trying to achieve i.e. to raise salary levels to western world standards. The reason why they are trying to do this; because thats what their people want.

Now, lets assume all salaries go up, to the levels of western world, what happens? There are are 2 kinds of companies here, I am not splitting them as MNCs or Locals, but as companies that can pass on the labour cost to the customer and those that cannot.

Those that cannot, will either close down or move to other location. Those that can pass on the cost will remain here.

Anyone knows which industries actually can absorb the high labour costs?
Shipyards certainly will because the low end jobs are done by Bangladeshis and locals wont touch them. I guess those workers work on work permits of S Pass, so they wont be affected as much.
Similarly other high end manufacturing will continue to thrive I guess, but not sure.

but any kinds of services companies like the backoffice operations of banks wont survive. Already many have been packing up.

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Re: Raising the Pay Levels for Employment Passes

Postby zzm9980 » Fri, 26 Apr 2013 8:21 am

Strong Eagle wrote: Instead, they view their job as a conduit, telling their reports what to do, and reporting to their superiors what is being done. It never occurs to the average 'manager' that they are just an extra (and unproductive) step in a communications chain that would do better without them.


This one is too easy:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAY27NU1Jog

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Postby zzm9980 » Fri, 26 Apr 2013 8:23 am

Wd40 wrote:companies that can pass on the labour cost to the customer and those that cannot.


And while some wages will rise, cost of living will rise more as that will ultimately be passed on down to the same people who want to earn more money. And not everyone will get a shiny new higher wage PMET job anyway, so the wage gap will also increase.

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Postby ScoobyDoes » Fri, 26 Apr 2013 10:14 am

Wd40 wrote:Its clear what the gahmen is trying to achieve i.e. to raise salary levels to western world standards. The reason why they are trying to do this; because thats what their people want.



Unfortunately as SG increases it's wages to meet those Western levels, Western levels are being cut to come into line with competition.

As Europe and the US struggles, cuts costs and the rest, people are working for less again, at least even those that are working. To boost employment countries such as Spain, Italy and the UK etc. will have to step back 30-yrs and actually start manufacturing stuff again, moving a healthy dose of work from Asia.

These adjustments are Megacycles over multiple decades but the switch from Asia back to Europe, the US and Africa is underway.
'When Lewis Hamilton wins a race he has to thank Vodafone whereas in my day I used to chase the crumpet. I know which era I'd rather race in.'

SIR Stirling Moss OBE

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Postby AngMoG » Fri, 26 Apr 2013 10:17 am

Wd40 wrote:Its clear what the gahmen is trying to achieve i.e. to raise salary levels to western world standards. The reason why they are trying to do this; because thats what their people want.

I think the net salary levels already are on Western levels (net, not "nett"), for the PMET jobs. The problem is, properties are so expensive that this is eaten up.
Wd40 wrote:but any kinds of services companies like the backoffice operations of banks wont survive. Already many have been packing up.

And that also means that if you are in one of those industries that mostly equates backoffice, and you are not on PR, you are in a pickle. Even having PR may not make a huge difference, seeing as this place has brought in a lot of people for these jobs over the last couple of years, and they are competing for fewer jobs...

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Postby AndrewV » Mon, 29 Apr 2013 2:47 pm

you guys keep talking about back office bank jobs going here and there, but the thing is i keep seeing more and more indians in changi business park and other such areas where banks have their back office operations. Am I stuck in a time warp or something? :???:

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Postby Sergei82 » Mon, 29 Apr 2013 2:57 pm

AndrewV wrote:you guys keep talking about back office bank jobs going here and there, but the thing is i keep seeing more and more indians in changi business park and other such areas where banks have their back office operations. Am I stuck in a time warp or something? :???:

Are you sure it is not that you see less and less non-Indians instead?

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Postby lolipop99 » Mon, 29 Apr 2013 11:45 pm

The moving of back office jobs outside of Singapore has proved to be a failure, banks are now moving back those jobs to Singapore due to better legal franework that protects customer privacy, better infrastructure, better work ethic... In fact I know my wifey's bank is moving a whole IT team of over 30 people from India to Singapore this year

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Postby AngMoG » Tue, 30 Apr 2013 10:07 am

lolipop99 wrote:The moving of back office jobs outside of Singapore has proved to be a failure, banks are now moving back those jobs to Singapore due to better legal franework that protects customer privacy, better infrastructure, better work ethic... In fact I know my wifey's bank is moving a whole IT team of over 30 people from India to Singapore this year


My 5 cents:
- Customer privacy: Banks have their own internal policies which all departments have to follow, and have no vested interest to move to stricter legislatures. So that is more likely a net negative.
- Infrastructure: Indian infrastructure - when it comes to IT and data centers - seems to have no real issues, and disasters are few. Other countries are not much worse (Malaysia, China). The advantage for that in Singapore is slim at best. And then there is always the option of having the data center here, and the IT in another country.
- Work ethic: since most people who work in IT in Singapore come from two countries that we all know, it makes a lot of sense to keep the jobs there instead of here. They may work a bit harder here for various reasons, but I think better management and oversight would achieve the same result (or close enough) as employing them here.

Apart from that, what you are quoting seems to be the standard "outsourcing is bad" mantra that is repeated by people who do not know how to outsource correctly.

Also, for a bank, a 30 people team is really peanuts. Maybe for this specific skillset, or team, it makes sense - I do not know. I do, however know, that at the bank I work at, they recently let go a whole department in Singapore (several hundreds, if not more), and moved the work overseas. And they have slowly been moving the lower-level jobs overseas over the past two years at least.

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Postby Wd40 » Fri, 03 May 2013 12:52 am

AndrewV wrote:you guys keep talking about back office bank jobs going here and there, but the thing is i keep seeing more and more indians in changi business park and other such areas where banks have their back office operations. Am I stuck in a time warp or something? :???:


I can confirm that is not the case.
2010 was clearly the peak in the number of foreigners working in CBP.
There was a time when there was no space in the Signature building and the other offices in the city area too were full, people used to sit in meeting rooms and work.

This year its opposite. So many vacant seats everywhere. The Signature building has been vacated and the big MNC bank has moved to another building in CBP and the strength of people is atleast 30% lesser than what it was.

Another proof is the queuing for viewing HDB flats in Tampines area. In 2010, you go for viewing a flat and there will be atleast 5-6 Indian families bidding each other out to get a stupid pigeon hole. The rent was $2.3k then.

Now HDB rental flats you go and view, mostly probably you are the only one. The rents are still same, but that is because the supply of flats has been drastically reduced and also owners/agents are still stubborn

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Postby AngMoG » Fri, 03 May 2013 9:53 am

I also saw an article recently on Yahoo Finance, that said that office vacancies are now around 9.4% - i.e., almost one in ten offices are empty.


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