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Top priority is to provide jobs for S'pore citizens

Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam was absolutely right when he said that there must be limits to the movement of people ('Wrong' to have total free flow of people: Tharman; July 23).

It is all right to have bilateral or multilateral free flow of goods and services, as long as it is not at the expense of one country. It has to be on a win-win basis.

Singapore would not be wrong in tightening restrictions on professionals from India and other countries from coming here.

Singapore has to take care of its own job market, as its top priority is to provide employment to its citizens, especially young graduates.

As it stands, one-third of Singapore's workforce consists of foreigners. This is a sizeable figure.

Free trade and services do not mean opening the floodgates to foreigners coming and working here.

Singapore would like to work with other nations, but its national interest should not be compromised.

India has to seriously look into improving its economy to provide jobs for its people within the country, rather than expect its citizens to seek jobs in foreign countries.

At present, thousands of Indian professionals, managers, executives and technicians are working abroad because their country cannot give them jobs with adequate salaries.

This is a serious brain drain for India.

The earlier this situation is corrected, the better it is for India.

Pavithran Vidyadharan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on July 30, 2017, with the headline 'Top priority is to provide jobs for S'pore citizens'. Print Edition | Subscribe