Chinese work permit holders in manufacturing, services can switch bosses to ease virus-related labour crunch

Singapore Manpower, Covid-19, Novel Coronavirus, Josephine Teo, Foreign Workers

Read more at The Business Times.

Singapore Manpower, Covid-19

2/25/2020

Chinese work permit holders in manufacturing, services can switch bosses to ease virus-related labour crunch.

Read more at The Business Times.

Sign up Singapore Business Federation (SBF) chairman Teo Siong Seng had said after a closed-door session with Mr Chan on Feb 14 that some players in the services sector hope they will be allowed to bring workers in from"non-traditional" markets. He also asked for more flexibility to let work pass holders be re-employed at new workplaces without having to first return home. With the latest tweak, companies will get "more flexibility to manage their manpower needs," the MOM said in a statement. "Companies facing a shortage of manpower can save on search and recruitment expenses. At the same time, companies that have exceeded manpower can provide their workers with an opportunity to continue working in Singapore and save on repatriation costs." Remarking that some companies are sitting on excess manpower given the drop in business volumes, while other employers have a manpower shortage, Mrs Teo said that the latest measure arose from conversations with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), and the Singapore National Employers Federation. Foreign workers unable to return to China, or who are still paying off loans and want to continue working here, can also benefit from the move, noted NTUC assistant director-general Yeo Guat Kwang, who heads its small- and medium-sized enterprise arm. "The flexibility of this temporary measure will therefore help our companies to manage their cost and manpower issues," he added. Transfers of workers will be arranged and facilitated by the SBF, whose chief executive Ho Meng Kit called the scheme"a practical and timely initiative". COORDINATED EFFORTS Mrs Teo also pointed to other"commendable" efforts that companies and workers have taken in this crisis, such as notifying customers of potential delays, cross-deploying staff, and overtime. She was at lorry crane distributor Wong Fong Engineering, a land transport engineering company that serves industries such as logistics, construction and waste management. With Wong Fong hiring mainly from China and Malaysia, the travel curbs have eaten into the availability of skilled labour, according to group finance director Jack Wong. The company has about a dozen workers who are still in China, out of a headcount of close to 300 employees. Wong Fong also runs an academy offering safety and orientation courses to new workers, but with an ongoing freeze on the issue of fresh work permits to Chinese nationals, its classes are now filled instead with trainees from other countries such as Thailand and Myanmar. When asked if the global spread of the respiratory disease could lead to restrictions on workers from more countries, Mrs Teo said that"we act on a whole-of-government basis". She added:"Of course, you know, if the measures are extended, MOM also has to look at what appropriate actions ought to be taken on the work pass holders front." Soon after Mrs Teo's remarks, her ministry announced that any work pass holders who have been to South Korea's virus-hit Daegu city or Cheongdo county in the last fortnight must get approval from the MOM before they enter Singapore, regardless of nationality. MOST STILL ABROAD Mrs Teo had told the press in early February that some 30,000 work pass holders from China left over Chinese New Year and had yet to return, with an MOM spokesman later adding that"the impact on manufacturing is higher than for construction or services sectors". The delay in the return of workers from China hit about one-tenth of the factory workforce, Singapore Manufacturing Federation president Douglas Foo earlier told The Business Times . The MOM is now approving an average of 220 applications to return each day, the ministry said in an update this week. The"vast majority" remain abroad, Mrs Teo said on Tuesday. Priority is being given to staff in essential operations such as healthcare, transport and waste management, although an unspecified number from other industries have also come back. Returning Chinese workers and their employers have to get the green light from the MOM before they can re-enter Singapore; the workers must then stay at home for 14 days. Work pass holders who have been in Daegu or Cheongdo will now also be put on a mandatory 14-day stay-home notice, from Thursday onwards. Labourers who flout these public health regulations risk deportation, while their employers face penalties such as having their ability to hire foreign manpower suspended. Read more: The Business Times

The Big Read: A month into COVID-19 outbreak, retailers, eateries are reeling from near-empty malls and streetsBusinesses say they are worried about the prospect of closures should the situation drag on longer than expected.

Coronavirus: Stop-gap measure allows Chinese nationals to switch jobs within services, manufacturing sectors in S'poreSINGAPORE - Chinese work pass holders in manufacturing and services will be allowed to switch jobs within their sectors from next Monday (March 2), even while in Singapore.. Read more at straitstimes.com.

China's main manufacturing hubs reboot after COVID-19 shutdownAs many parts of China ease coronavirus travel curbs, main manufacturing hubs in the east and south are seeing hundreds of thousands of migrant ...

China slightly eases Wuhan's virus quarantine measuresBEIJING: Chinese authorities on Monday (Feb 24) slightly relaxed their month-long quarantine measures in Wuhan, allowing some people to leave the ...

Bosses should be fair during virus crisis, people should go back to spending: Josephine TeoBosses should be fair during virus crisis, people should go back to spending: Josephine Teo .

19 work pass holders, employers punished for flouting COVID-19 Leave of Absence requirementsSINGAPORE: A total of 19 work pass holders and employers were punished for flouting the Ministry of Manpower’s Leave of Absence (LOA) requirements ...



Singapore reports 6th COVID-19 death, an 88-year-old man

75 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore; wedding events venue in Tanjong Katong among 4 new clusters

75 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore; events venue in Tanjong Katong among 4 new clusters

These Shops In Singapore Will Remain Open, Even As Circuit-Breaker Measures Kick In On Apr 7

75 new coronavirus cases in S'pore; 4 new clusters including 3 workers' dormitories and events venue in Geylang

Police investigating after apparent leak of MOE, MSF press release on school closures

Trump seeks to block 3M mask exports and grab masks from its overseas customers

Write Comment

Thank you for your comment.
Please try again later.

Latest News

News

25 February 2020, Tuesday News

Previous news

Bosses should be fair during virus crisis, people should go back to spending: Josephine Teo

Next news

China Taiping Insurance offers Covid-19 coverage for new, existing customers
Singapore sees record daily spike of 120 COVID-19 cases, 'significant number' linked to workers' dormitories COVID-19: Heng Swee Keat to announce third round of support measures in new 'Solidarity Budget' Covid-19: 120 new cases in highest daily spike of infections; including 32 linked to workers’ dormitories in Punggol and Toh Guan COVID-19: New website provides updates on crowd levels in Singapore malls Runaway horse stuns road users in Bukit Timah; it was recaptured within 15 minutes Horse on the loose was just trying to find its way home, says owner Singapore Expo being prepared to house COVID-19 patients who have recovered but may still be infectious: Gan Kim Yong Trump urges coronavirus patients to take malaria drug despite lack of study on efficacy No, You Can't Takeaway Meatballs (Or Any Food) From Ikea From Apr 7 To May 4; Ikea Confirms Cafes Will Be Shut LTA suspends COE bidding exercises for April amid new COVID-19 measures Record 120 new coronavirus cases in Singapore, 2 foreign worker dormitories gazetted as isolation areas 430,000 people have travelled from China to US since coronavirus surfaced
Singapore reports 6th COVID-19 death, an 88-year-old man 75 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore; wedding events venue in Tanjong Katong among 4 new clusters 75 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore; events venue in Tanjong Katong among 4 new clusters These Shops In Singapore Will Remain Open, Even As Circuit-Breaker Measures Kick In On Apr 7 75 new coronavirus cases in S'pore; 4 new clusters including 3 workers' dormitories and events venue in Geylang Police investigating after apparent leak of MOE, MSF press release on school closures Trump seeks to block 3M mask exports and grab masks from its overseas customers Coronavirus: All public libraries to close from April 7; S'pore Pools to suspend 4D, Toto draws Covid-19: 75 more cases in S’pore, over 90% locally transmitted; 3 new clusters at worker dorms OCBC temporarily shuts almost half of its branches, other banks set to follow suit Parents will have to continue paying pre-school fees through month-long closure: MSF Police investigating after apparent leak of MOE, MSF press release on school closures