Gig workers in Singapore divided over contribution to savings scheme

The discourse comes as a special committee continues to study recommendations and ways to strengthen protections for gig workers in Singapore.
By: | November 17, 2022

The opinions of more than 20,000 gig workers in Singapore were divided on whether mandatory Central Provident Fund (CPF) contributions should be implemented, with half supporting them and the other half concerned about their take-home earnings.

CPF is a compulsory comprehensive savings and pension plan for working Singaporeans and permanent residents primarily to fund their retirement, healthcare, and housing needs in Singapore.

Those who wanted mandatory CPF contributions were largely younger workers who wanted to use the contributions to pay for their housing. However, those who opposed had already paid off their housing loans and had other plans to fund their retirement.

Gig workers include delivery riders, private-hire car drivers and taxi drivers, and account for about 79,000 workers, or 3% of Singapore’s resident workforce.

READ: Gig workers in Singapore to receive more protection

The findings were revealed at an engagement session by the Advisory Committee on Platform Workers, which was set up by the Ministry of Manpower last year to propose ways to strengthen protections for platform workers. The committee is expected to provide recommendations on the retirement and housing adequacy, work injury compensation, and bargaining power for gig workers by the end of this year.

Employers in Singapore are mandated to contribute to the CPF account of their local or permanent resident workers who earn more than S$750 (US$548), up to 17% of workers’ wages, and capped at a wage ceiling of S$6,000 (US$4,385).