Singapore records highest unemployment rate in more than a decade

As of June 2020, there were 90,500 unemployed residents, of whom 79,600 were citizens.
By: | July 29, 2020

The overall unemployment rate in Singapore rose to 2.9% in the second quarter, an increase from the 2.4% recorded in the first quarter of 2020.

According to the latest statistics released by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), the unemployment rate for Singaporeans and permanent residents rose to 3.9% in the second quarter from 3.3% in the preceding quarter, while the unemployment rate of Singaporeans increased from 3.5% to 4%.

This represents Singapore’s highest unemployment rate since 2009, when overall unemployment rate peaked at 3.3% during the height of the global financial crisis.

The worst performing sectors were identified as the manufacturing, services and construction sectors, which all saw a rise in retrenchments over the second quarter. Overall, retrenchments more than doubled in the second quarter to 6,700 from 3,220 in the previous quarter.

READ: MOM: Helping displaced Singaporeans find jobs “topmost priority”

Earlier this month, Singapore entered into a technical recession when the economy shrunk by 41.2% from the April to June period, with the government expecting the country’s GDP to contract between 4% and 7% this year.

To help more Singaporeans cope with the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, the government is continuing to push ahead with initiatives and programmes such as the SGUnited Mid-Career Pathways programme.

Introduced earlier this month under the SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package, the new career pathway programme aims to provide attachments and full-time training courses for mid-career jobseekers. Those who take on the attachments, which range between four and nine months, will receive a monthly training allowance of between S$1,400 and S$3,000.