Annual job growth of 25,000 to 40,000 for next three to five years: Lim Swee Say

An autonomous guided vehicle from Sats being shown to Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say during the career fair on Feb 8, 2017.
An autonomous guided vehicle from Sats being shown to Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say during the career fair on Feb 8, 2017.ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR
A smartwatch from Sats Technical Ramp being shown to Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say during the career fair on Feb 8, 2017.
A smartwatch from Sats Technical Ramp being shown to Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say during the career fair on Feb 8, 2017.ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR
The crowd at the career fair at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport on Feb 8, 2017.
The crowd at the career fair at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport on Feb 8, 2017.ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR
The crowd at the career fair at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport on Feb 8, 2017.
The crowd at the career fair at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport on Feb 8, 2017.ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR
People look at brochures and booths during the career fair at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport on Feb 8, 2017.
People look at brochures and booths during the career fair at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport on Feb 8, 2017. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR

SINGAPORE - Singapore aims to create about 25,000 to 40,000 jobs annually for the next three to five years, said Minister for Manpower Lim Swee Say on Wednesday (Feb 8).

Due to economic restructuring and an ageing workforce, the number of jobs created in the last two years had gone down significantly, he noted.

"We won't go back to the days of 100,000 to 120,000 jobs a year," Mr Lim to the media on the sidelines of a career fair at Crowne Plaza Hotel at Changi Airport. "The number will stabilise at the new base."

His comments come a day after the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) released its job vacancies report for 2016.

While more jobs in the coming years will be aimed at professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs), he said, there is a higher risk of mismatches between jobseekers and job openings.

Jobseekers may not know where to look for jobs or what jobs are available he said, or they may not have the necessary skills or experience for the jobs that are available.

 

"If we want to succeed in keeping the unemployment rate in check, we need to do more on both fronts," said Mr Lim.

He noted that efforts by Workforce Singapore and the Employment and Employability Institute had helped successfully match about 20,000 people here to jobs last year (2016).

The Manpower Minister outlined three key aims for the MOM this year.

One is to strengthen professional conversion programmes - currently aimed at entry-level professionals - to also help facilitate career conversions for mid-level workers.

Another is to be more inclusive and reach out not only to PMETs, but all segments of the workforce, he said, including older workers and the disabled.

Thirdly, the ministry is also looking at how the growing pool of older PMETs can be better matched to jobs at small and medium enterprises which may require their expertise.