Singapore's labour crunch issue: Why it's happening and what more can be done

The labour market report released by the Manpower Ministry last month also noted there were more vacancies than job seekers for a third consecutive quarter.
The labour market report released by the Manpower Ministry last month also noted there were more vacancies than job seekers for a third consecutive quarter.PHOTO: ST FILE

It's a constant refrain among businesses: there aren't enough workers. Insight looks at why there is a labour crunch, what affected sectors are doing, and what more could be done.

Companies in Singapore are finding it tough to fill vacancies, whether for highly-skilled roles in the tech sector or labour intensive jobs that fewer locals are keen to do.

Behind this manpower crunch - which some say is holding back business growth plans - are a greying population and tight foreign labour policies, as well as a mismatch between jobs in demand and the skills needed to fill them.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on January 13, 2019, with the headline 'Labour shortage'. Print Edition | Subscribe