11 July 2018
It is customary to assume more educational qualifications will lead to better job prospects.
However, we are seeing increased competition for jobs from graduates of other countries who are willing to accept a lower pay because the cost of living back home for them is a lot lower than compared to Singapore.
Developing countries are now mass producing graduates and exporting them to the rest of the world, including Singapore.
More intense competition in the job market has also led to increased competition within Singapore schools, exacerbated by the fact that our schools themselves open their doors to top students from overseas.
Companies are also automating many tasks that used to be done by white collar workers such that those tasks can now be done by lower skilled workers willing to be paid a lot less.
This puts an overall downward pressure on wages at the same time when the cost of living is rising.
Singapore has little choice but to focus on its human resources, and to continue to pursue the broad strategy of raising the demand and supply of skills.