Finally a newspaper is pointing it out.Friday, October 21, 2005
So many jobs created, still so many jobless
Almost 49,500 jobs were created in the first half of the year
Job creation is at its strongest in four-and-a-half years, but that has not led to a significant fall in unemployment, the Ministry of Manpower said yesterday.
According to its paper on the latest trends on employment and labour supply, the unemployment rate stands at 3.4 per cent, only slightly lower than the 3.6 per cent a year earlier.
This despite gains of 49,500 jobs for the first of half of the year, more than double the 24,600 over the same period last year.
Economic growth has not yet solved the problem of structural unemployment, where there is a skills mismatch between lower-educated job seekers and the new jobs created.
Much of the job growth is occurring mainly in higher paying positions occupied by professionals, managers, executives and technicians, which collectively form almost 50 per cent of local employment.
But with retraining and jobs redesign, the ministry is optimistic that lower-skilled Singaporeans can "look forward to securing employment so long as the economy continues to grow".
It added that more people are entering the labour force to seek work, buoyed by the increased job opportunities from the economic upturn.
The Workforce Development Agency also issued a release yesterday on how it is facilitating employment among Singaporeans.
Of the more than 45,000 job seekers who registered this year for employment assistance with the Distributed CareerLink Network, about 20,000 were placed in jobs.
Over half are workers above 40, and about 75 per cent are lower-skilled workers. This placement rate is an 11 per cent increase over the same period last year.
MOM data highlighted that local residents, including permanent residents, benefited most from the job gains.
In the last 18 months, local employment rose by 78,400 or 65 per cent of total employment created over this period. Excluding National Servicemen, there was a record 2,256,100 employed persons as of June, of which 642,400 are foreigners.
At the industry level, construction halted its slide in local employment with the addition of 400 jobs.
And although local plant and machine operators and production craftsmen suffered job losses as companies continue to shift their operations overseas, manufacturing added 13,900 jobs.
The services sector emerged tops in job growth, rising by 65,300 in local employment in the past 18 months.
Well, I have highlighted is before. I am just glad that Today decided to bring the issue out into the open without the usual spinning.
There is another point that I wish to highlight. That is the possibility that the unemployment rate for local residents is artificially lowered when PRs and Singaporean Citizens together are lumped together for the calculation of unemployment rate.
Why do I say so? That is because we all know that many foreign talents get their PRs relatively easily once they had secured a job. By lumping PRs and Singaporean together, there is a good chance that the unemployment rate would appear lower.
Therefore we Singaporean Citizens need to ask our govt.: What is the actual unemployment rate for Singaporean Citizens?