Manpower Minister Josephine Teo welcomes new labour chief and thanks his predecessor

Manpower Minister Josephine Teo said the labour movement has been an invaluable partner in supporting the various initiatives by the ministry. ST PHOTO : LEE JIA WEN

SINGAPORE - Manpower Minister Josephine Teo promised to continue to work with the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) and employers to serve the interests of workers and businesses, in letters to the new and previous labour chiefs.

The labour movement has been an invaluable partner in supporting the various initiatives by the Ministry of Manpower, she said.

Mrs Teo's comments came in two separate letters she sent to new labour chief Ng Chee Meng, and his predecessor Chan Chun Sing on Friday (May 25).

Congratulating Mr Ng on being elected secretary-general of the NTUC, she said she looked forward to working with him to strengthen Singapore's brand of tripartism.

"MOM is committed to partnering NTUC as well as employers to nurture an agile, future-ready workforce, so as to realise the shared vision of an inclusive workforce, progressive workplaces, and secure retirement for all," she said.

Mr Ng was promoted to his new role on Tuesday, following the resignation of Mr Chan on the same day.

Mr Chan had been appointed Trade and Industry Minister in the Cabinet reshuffle which took effect on May 1, while Mr Ng, the former Education Minister (Schools), had joined NTUC as deputy secretary-general on April 23.

In her letter to Mr Chan, Mrs Teo credited him for strongly complementing the efforts of MOM, through calling for workers to become more adaptable to change, and fostering progressive workplaces.

In particular, she said, the NTUC's Employment and Employability Institute played an important role in encouraging rank-and-file workers to upskill and helping place them in good jobs, when MOM and Workforce Singapore stepped up their Adapt and Grow efforts in the last two years.

Adapt and Grow offers a suite of programmes to place local job seekers in jobs and upgrade their skills.

Under Mr Chan, the labour movement also provided crucial insights for the review of the Employment Act, and was an invaluable partner in the setting up of the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management which gives workers an avenue to manage or resolve disputes with their employers, said Mrs Teo.

"Your drive to make the labour movement representative of all working people in Singapore - including professionals, managers, executives and the self-employed - ensured that their interests were championed," she added.

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