Over 187,000 Singapore workers’ salaries affected in past 3 months

It makes up about 5% of the country’s workforce, with their salaries cut by up to 25% as a result of cost-saving measures.
By: | June 24, 2020

More than 187,000 employees in Singapore have been affected by cost-saving measures in the last three months, according to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).

As of March 12, companies with 10 or more staff are required to notify MOM if they take cost-saving measures that affect employees’ salaries.

The affected workers make up about 5% of the country’s workforce excluding domestic helpers, with their salaries cut by up to 25% as a result of the cost-saving measures implemented.

READ: Singapore’s unemployment rate hits decade high

The MOM and the Tripartite Alliance for Fair and Progressive Employment Practices (Tafep) said in the joint statement on June 24 that the top three cost-saving measures implemented were no-pay leave, adjustments to monthly salary components, and shorter work week.

However, they also found that 74% of the cases occurred from a lack of communication with employees about the measures and the reasons for them.

The largest group of around 45,000 affected workers are in the accommodation and food services industry.

25,000 are from construction firms such as builders and demolition companies, while 19,000 are in wholesale and retail trade firms, such as confectionery stores and departmental stores.

“Many disputes can be avoided if both parties communicate, make some sacrifices, and work together to help the company pull through this crisis,” the MOM said in a statement.