Subject: Co which deprived Singaporeans of jobs
European company ST Microelectronics is conducting a massive recruitment
exercise in Penang on 6 February 2010 to seek Malaysians for various
positions in Singapore:
The positions on offer include process engineers, industrial engineers and
These are positions which are highly sought after among Singapore
Singapore produce more than 1,000 engineers yearly from both NUS and NTU.
There should be ample local applicants for these vacancies.
Why is ST Microelectronics incurring extra expenses to go all the way up
north to Penang to recruit Malaysian engineers? Are they more qualified than
Leaders from the ruling party have been claiming that foreign workers are
needed in sectors shunned by Singaporeans.
The mainstream media has been selling the story to Singaporeans that local
companies have no choice but to turn to foreigners because few Singaporeans
wish to take up the jobs on offer.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in his New Year Day's message that
Singaporeans will remain a "priority" for his administration.
Manpower Minister Gan Kim Yong signaled a "shift" in the ruling party's
pro-foreigner policies by emphasizing the need for Singapore to reduce its
heavy dependence on foreigners and to boost labor productivity.
Even the strongest advocate for foreign workers, MM Lee Kuan Yew had
In a speech made at HDB's 50th anniversary, Lee was reported to say:
"The next five years, we have decided we will tier down our need for foreign
workers. We will pay for help to educate people, continuing education and
training, which means a lot of money, probably co-payment with the employer
to send him,"
[Straits Times, 28 January 2010]
Since the government has already expressed its intentions explicitly, why
are companies like ST Microelectronics still employing foreigners at the
expense of Singaporeans?
It is not as if Malaysian engineers are more highly qualified than
Singaporean engineers. If this is so, then Singaporeans should be flocking
across the Causeway to study in Malaysian universities instead of the other
How does the ruling party explain the discrepancy between their words and
actions taken on the ground by major MNCs like ST Microelectronics which
should be heeding its exhortations to employ more locals and upgrade their
A job gained by a Malaysian is one lost for a Singaporean.
There are many Singapore engineering graduates who will jump at the chance
of working for ST Microelectronics.
In other developed countries, such jobs are usually reserved for their own
citizens. Only in Singapore where Singaporeans are so openly discriminated
as evident by the numerous job ads put up on the internet seeking foreigners
to fill vacancies which should otherwise belong to them.
It appears that the situation on the ground will not improve by much with
the cosmetic changes introduced by the ruling party to placate angry voters.
Singaporeans will have to make their voices heard through the ballot box to
ensure that their interests are taken care of now and they will not be
relegated to becoming "second class citizens" in their own country.