Singapore’s government has identified five industries as potentially major sources of job openings in the years ahead. Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say said more would be done to help jobseekers land these positions. The five industries are financial services, professional services, healthcare, wholesale trade and infocomm and media. Lim said help for jobseekers will come in the form of existing retraining programmes, or where needed, new initiatives would be set up, with inputs from the relevant agencies, employers and unions in these industries.

Second Manpower Minister Josephine Teo will oversee the effort to pinpoint the types of workers and roles in these industries that are affected by the ongoing economic restructuring, as well as find out what upcoming positions there are. She will be supported by four Senior Ministers of State.

Lim said the five industries were identified because they are being “most impacted” by rapid technological advancements or are likely major sources of jobs of the future, or both. But he was quick to add that other sectors would not be neglected, and could be added to the list later on. Noting the protracted nature of economic transformation, Lim said improving the employability of workers was a “journey with no end”. He added that in future, more and more of workers would have to refresh their skills … even more frequently than before.

In a Facebook post yesterday, Teo noted that new jobs are being created despite slower economic growth, adding that over the next few years, the five industries identified are expected to account for about half of the 25,000 to 40,000 PMET (professionals, managers, executives and technicians) jobs created each year.

Since focusing on becoming leaner on manpower, there have been some results, Lim noted. Last year, productivity rose by 1 per cent after staying flat for five years. This, coupled with 1 per cent workforce growth, saw the economy growing by 2 per cent, said Lim. This combination of “workforce expansion and productivity gains” took the Republic a step closer to its goal of keeping workforce growth at 1 per cent and raising productivity to 2 per cent.
This will expand the economy by 3 per cent, said Lim.


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