The decision to raise the minimum qualifying salary for S Pass holders may have unintended consequences (Salary thresholds for new Employment Pass, S Pass applicants to be raised, Feb 19).
With about six months until the changes kick in in September, employers with S Pass workers will need to recalibrate their human resources practices, but are unlikely to do so expeditiously.
If these employers cannot find suitably skilled locals to fill the roles and find it unwise to let their S Pass workers go, they may just go with the flow and raise the workers' salaries to meet the threshold.
The move to raise the salary threshold would thus end up being a government-driven pay rise instead.
The new policies for S Pass holders should focus more on raising the levy fees, as the revenue raised could help fund manpower and skills-building programmes.
Tan Kar Quan