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Saturday January 13th 2018

Foreigner expat: Is $5,500 salary enough for me in Singapore?

Posted by Cybeh on: 11 November 2010, 14:27:06 pm


I recently got a job offer for 5500 SGD pre tax per month ($66,000) from Singapore.

I have 6+ yrs of experience in Information Security Management, and currently earning a good salary here in India.

Is this salary good enough for me a family of three, one kid who will be going to play school in next 6 months. Wife is probably not gonna be working.

Let me know your thoughts. Am looking to have a decent lifestyle and thinking to save some.

I was thinking of taking it up and later switching to another company once am there after an year. What are the challenges for shifting jobs there?

Any help will be greatly appreciated.



Posted by Do you realize… on 15 November 2010, 14:28:26 pm

I don’t think I am advertising for Singapore, but merely stating that you are comparing apples against oranges.

Traffic in Singapore is bad, but how many people on this board have  ever been trapped in a 2-hour traffic in Singapore? The transport system in Singapore may not be the best, but again, we are talking about Singapore compared to India. I would say Singapore is pretty ahead in comparison.

If you look at the condition of properties, it may not be the best and there is definitely room for improvement, but again, you are comparing  against India. What I am saying is, Singapore is an entirely different place compared to India. In India, a higher middle class may have 4-6 maids at home. But in Singapore or any major financial centre, how may people can have 4-6 maids at home? Just because you do not have 4-6 maids, does that mean the quality of life is compromised?

There are a lot of factors to compare, when you are putting two cities next to each other.

The best way for the OP to decide, is to simply buy an air ticket to Singapore, stay for a couple of weeks if you can afford, and make an informed decision. Everyone has their point of view on this board, but ultimately, its the OP’s POV which is most relevant.

Many Indians in Singapore feel that they are placing their kid competitively ahead when they leave India and move to Singapore. That might be something the OP would want to consider as well.


Posted by An indian perspective on 12 January 2011, 1:07:56 am

I came to Singapore at age 25 earning  $5K a month in 2005. The money was more than enough for a bachelor sharing a 5-room HDB apartment with 2 other bachelor friends whom I knew from India.I always had enough to go out for parties at CQ, trips with friends, the odd date now and then (unfortunately few and far between) and yet still able to save $2.5 k a month.  Of course rent and cost of living were low then.Difference between my life in India and Singapore is  that I had more disposable income  to spend but in India by spending  25% of the salary I could afford to get someone to cook for me, someone else to clean the house and do the laundry and a third person to wash my car once a week.Fast forward to 2011, I make just under $6.2k,  I’m married and my wife is unemployed. I am still renting an HDB, but the smallest possible configuration.Taking a PR was the biggest mistake. Company reduced my salary by the amount they need to contribute. On top of that employee contribution from my salary.

Now I barely save 1K a month, that too by penny pinching to an extraordinary degree. Barely go out now to save money. Travel only by bus/MRT. No cabs for personal purposes. Eating out is now restricted  to  the food court. Only 1 trip a year and that too back home to visit our parents.

My college friends in India (in the IT industry) earn roughly around $3.5k to 4k in SGD terms. They live in posh apartments which they own (still have to pay the mortgage). Have servants, can afford to take vacations to places like Phuket, Bali, Egypt, Dubai and are basically enjoying life.

So my new year resolution is to leave Singapore by the middle of this year and try to get a job in India to chase the Indian dream. My Singapore dream has turned sour in the last 3 years.

So the point is…. $5.5 K is not enough for an Indian family living an upper middle class life similar to  India. 3K SGD will go a long way in India. Its only just above penury in Singapore.

All comments retrieved from ExpatSingapore Message Board

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63 Responses to “Foreigner expat: Is $5,500 salary enough for me in Singapore?”

  1. sp tan says:

    For $5,500 per month, the company can easily take a Singaporean. Why take in a foreigner when we heard there are unemployed PMETs having difficulties finding jobs. Some even hv masters degree and years of experience.
    Another company is even paying $5,000.00 for a 25 year old foreigner. How much is the average salary of a 25 yr old Singaporean graduate?

    • David says:

      Near to nope will earn $5,000.00 at the age of 25 year old for Singaporean.

      • IRene says:

        yeah man, people i know who studied so hard & followed the ‘education system’ and finished University are probably only getting around $2.5k – $3k at age of 25 years old. Minus the cpf, its probably only around $2k. SGD$5k is ridiculously a lot for a 25 year old unless you’re some kind of extreme talented professor.
        We Singaporeans who comes from middle class can never afford to live in luxurious apartment, cars and still own servants while we are still in our 20s-30s. I guess i now understand why so many Singaporean are complaining about their quality of life here. Perhaps i should move to other country to live in the future too :(

        • bfree says:


          Sorry, no disrespect and don’t mean to talk up, but that is incorrect, i am 24 on 7k a month, working at Singaporean Company and not an MNC.

          The difference is, you need to be marketable, know your stuff, what can you do others can’t. Anyway it is possible to get that salary before you hit 25. You just need to differentiate yourself and be indispensable to a company. I’ll be the guy in the office you goto when something needs to be delivered, or people are having issues with certain projects. Agree though not anybody can just walk in and demand a salary in that range though.

          • San says:

            From August 1, The new policy Fair consideration framework successfully launched and many of the Locals got the job because of that policy. The problem here is not because of foreigners. Because of the education system. Like India, got few thousands of universities and few million graduates.. Then added to that all other Asian countries comes to billion graduates.. so all those graduates are recognized to work as a engineers and managers… but in Singapore few thousand local students from only very few universities makes the situation difficult. If government focuses to give free and 100% post graduate education to all the locals, it will be the best way to solve the issues. However we cant blame the whole foreign manpower, since the second grade jobs by less educated workers, cleaning, construction and the all kind of tough jobs is handled by 80 to 90 % of foreigners.Before we blame simply about the government, we have to Google something like History, Economical contribution of the country, Foreign manpower income, tourism etc,etc.,, So far the government is doing very good, since they know very well how to develop the economy of Singapore as a multi cultured nation.Except few things like education system for locals need to be concentrated. Government has developed the country and raised the economy incomparable. The safe , peace, healthy environment has been given and still we complaining, complaining….. It is not because we born somewhere and we own the land.. we need to earn and buy anything even a bottle of any part of the world including our own country… so think the whole world is ours.. go wherever you like, study well as possible and put your effort , work hard, work smart, earn as much as you can and enjoy however you like… That’s all… If you have such thought..Regardless where you are….Life is beautiful..

  2. admin says:

    Hi SP Tan,

    I have the same thoughts and frankly I think Singaporeans all got the short end of the stick.

    There should be some form of restriction here insted of opening the door wide for foreigners to come.

    If I can get $3000 a month I will be very thankful and this foregin guy in the third comment is already leaving Singapore with $6200 income as he feels that its not enough for him?!

  3. againsomeone says:

    Why do you assume you can do the job of those Indians guys ? Just curious.

    Do remember degree is just one piece of the puzzle, smallest one at that. The most important thing: can the candidate get the job done ?

    • admin says:

      Hi againsomeone,

      I think the poor performance of some foreigner expats are there for all to see.

      Many employers have in fact re-hire local workers now as they find that we are better suited in our own work environment and perhaps more responsible as its our rice bowl and country.

      Expats are known to pack their bags and leave when they could find better jobs in other countries. Its a transition place for many foreigners as after earning enough they will choose to go back.

      On another note, I dont deny that some expats are good at their work, are reliable and responsible.

      • againsomeone says:

        My question was quite specific: why does any of the posters feel they are qualified ? I have seen plenty of dead wood local SGers just like I have seen Indians or Chinese and in the absence of reasonable objective evidence I find it hard to understand why would anyone claim they have the qualifications to do the job they know little about. I have interviewed enough and worked enough with different type of people to know one thing: citizenship has no to little correlation with person’s ability to perform the job. To me it looks like argument you are making is that pink NRIC is sufficient qualification to do the job. Don’t you think it’s a bit irrational ?

        • David says:

          My question was quite specific: why does any of the foreigner feel they are qualified or should be paid more then what they are getting in their home country?I know HR Manager from India who come to Singapore to work as a HR Manager with a starting salary of $7K++. However he is still unable to answer simple questions from employee such as labor law or from employee handbook even he has work in Singapore after 2 years++ in the same company. How can a HR Manager be competent to manage and even give direction for HR in the company when he is the one who should update employee handbook when there is a updated labor law from MOM? Even a HR Assistant earning about $1500 can do better then him.

  4. Denial Tan says:

    It is not cheap anymore to employ foreigners and many of them are starting to complain about the salary like the guy above mentioned. I wondered why did employers still continue to employ foreigners in large scale.

    Panasonic Bedok South was a good example. The whole factory is almost 95% foreigners(they do their mass recruitment in China and everybody from worker to engineers are mostly from China except a few Malaysians) and I believe that it is impossible that they can pay all the assembly line workers(about 75% of there workforce) $2500/mth so they so be on S-Pass for about $1800/mth and above.

    So, how is it possible that Panasonic Bedok can employ so many foreigners. I have even heard from a guy from WDA that they were given ‘quotas’ to fill up companies with ‘foreigners’. I think that’s why WDA is not even bothered to match jobs for most locals because they have to give priority to foreigners first. LHL had given quotas of foreigners for MOM to fill because of the free-trade agreement.

  5. sp tan says:

    At the age of 25, what experience, skill and qualification does this person hv to comment a salary of $5,000.00 per month ? The same yong Singaporean graduate possibly cost only half of that during 2005.Another person has only abt 6 years of experience and is getting $5,500.00 which any unemployed Singaporean IT PMET would be more than happy to accept.
    Moreover, both foreigners are also untested when they are offered the emplyment. What make you think that they can do the job that our singaporeans cannot.

    • David says:

      Most of the foreigner graduate around 22 year old (Some even younger) and will have 3 years of experiences when they reach 25 year old. We can only blame the Government for the unfair prolong education system and forcing us to serve NS to delay our life development. In fact Singapore is one of the worst country that delay their citizen life development such as education, career, married, family & etc.

    • Jake neo says:

      Simple because locals need work life balance, need 4 hour yAkun breaks, cannot work jurong, MC on Mondays and lazy. And cannot speak proper English (understand la).

  6. againsomeone says:

    Ever heard of interviews ? I have had a young chap of 23 y.o just graduated uni from some god forsaken country who joined us at 3500 SGD and he was double promoted two years in a row because he was good with one middle of year promotion thrown in too. Company fought for him tooth and nail at the start because Q1 pass was rejected by MOM two times but in the end we got him in because he did make an impression during interview.

    Unfortunately for us and fortunately for him, he was too good, after 2 years he left us for one of the most iconic companies in the world for triple his starting salary, even though we could counter the offer at >15%, we couldn’t match the same intellectual environment and challenges. I still keep in touch as I like smart people, regardless of age, it’s always possible to learn from them.

    In mean time we had quite a few of so-so SG/PRC/IN, who had been quite happy with their office plankton existence for 5-6 years when he came on-board. Even though quite a few SGers had much better qualifications on paper, when it came to real work the young chap ran circles around them, he was a gold mine as far as money making for the organization concerned, and he absolutely was punching way above his pay grade w/o any motivational talks or management inducements because he had passion for what he did. Cue another article from Gilbert.

    So, I’m sorry to disappoint you but young exceptional candidates do exist. When I compare someone in office who has been 6 years on the job and yet can’t do 1/10th of what he did in half the time (productivity differential was just beyond ridiculous), I am interested why anyone would think they can deliver based on some paper qualifications. Even though SG educational system attempts to make the impression that graduates are easily interchangeable standardized commodity nuts & bolts for corporate machinery, that’s not true in real life.

    Would I recommend employing someone good for 2 years vs office plankton for 5 years even if there are challenges of keeping the top performer (it’s not just about money) ? Absolutely.

  7. Matt Burni Thomas says:

    Cybeh -

    I would rather say go for it.. S$ 5500, is not a bad money.. you can save in that.. again it all depends from person to person and the lifestyle they leave…

    Yes, as someone said.. you can’t compare apples with oranges… there are plus and minus in every part of life…

    If you are living a comfortable life in India and you are really happy with that.. then there is no point in looking for this changes… however if that is not the case… then why not give a try and see… who knows you fortune may change because of that…

    Life is not all that easy… don’t miss the opportunity.. because opportunity strikes only once…

    Bermuthe !!!


  8. niranjith says:

    Iam a south indian,i come from an average family.Im planning for a job in singapore.In india i work as a system administrator,and MCITP AND CCNA are my qualifications.i have doubts in my mind that what will be an ideal salary for me to save 50,000/- indian money.
    im married,have a child.Planning to take my family too to singapore if am settled there.wife also willing to work there.
    if anyone came thru these situations ,or who know well about these matters please mail me

  9. Lin says:

    Singapore is “Nice” to hear.. but is “Hard” to live

  10. KT says:

    To all foreigners regardless of your nationality, please do not come to Singapore to look for a job ! We have high no. of citizens jobless, and the unemployment rate does not tell the truth of our real situation.

    Over the last 6 years because of the surge in no. of foreign workers, Singaporeans do not welcome foreign workers although we welcome you to be our tourists. We have nothing against you matter of fact, we just want our job back !

    • Eddie Johnson says:

      That’s absolute balderdash! Singapore has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the developed world, and it incidentally has one of the highest job hopping rates i’ve ever come across – the latter isn’t in any way factual, it’s my opinion.

      Without foreigners and expats, Singapore would be dead in the water. Period.

      Who takes up most of the private rentals lining greedy Singaporean owners’ pockets? Why is the govt pushing forward with getting singapore listed on the entertainment and cultural map? I know you might not like hearing this, but without foreign workers, expats, FTs, whatever you want to term us as, it would be a far cry from what it is today.

      Just have a think about how many Western companies have set up shop here and try to be a bit grateful instead of constantly eating sour grapes..

      • jj@39 says:

        Spore govt announced its unemployment rate is only 2%. Is the unemployment rate really only 2%? How is that 2% measured from? 2% of unemployed locals or 2% of locals + PRs?

        I think there are reports on Spore having one of the highest concentration of millionaires in the world. Every 1 out of 10 persons, he/she is a millionaire! How many of you believe this?

        Spore has one of the highest job hopping rate in the world but why? Would you frequently job hop if you have a job that you like; the salary is good; the workload is acceptable; the working hours is acceptable; inflation is low or moderate etc. We are like nomads but in a modern city, we are forced by circumstances to move & relocate.

        Foreign investors, expats or foreign workers also need Spore. Even without foreigners, Spore still able to survive. Perhaps Spore will transform into Bhutan or Shangri-la in SEA region. That isn’t something bad. The Gini index used for measuring wealth gap clearly showed that Spore is one of the countries with biggest between rich and poor. This is bad.

        It’s abnormal for a small country with very limited resources to allow such huge amount of foreigners into the country. The living environment & social balances had been greatly interrupted.

        Those who collected rentals by renting out their HDB flats, condo apartments, houses, offices, shops, warehouses & buildings aren’t entirely Sporeans. Many of these owners are foreigners.

        Spore wants to be advanced in many areas, not only entertainment and cultural. We invited many foreign experts & allowed many foreigners into the country to impart their knowledge & experience. But how many of them are good? How many of them are genuine? So far Spore didn’t do well in many areas. We didn’t do well in entertainment and cultural areas even after inviting & allowed so many foreigners into the country.

        We may be killing ourselves by trying to be on the top or be number 1.

      • Global says:

        Who made Sg conducive for foreign companies
        To set up shop in Sg?
        The govt ?? Who MADE the govt ?? the citizens!
        Before 1990 , there was no massive influx of
        2 milliOn foreigners, did Sg survive from before
        1959 and before 1990
        The fundamentals are built by the people before
        Will the ordinary worker feel betrayed by the
        Govt policy to get away MASSIVE Spass and Epass,
        Oh , I see, the Sg citizens are not qualified, how
        Did they build up Sg ?
        Every country needs a certain amount of expats
        But not the way it has gone in the past 10 years in
        Sg where Sg are being replaced, for whatever reasons
        The point is the Sg govt has an agenda as she is
        Losing power and need to turn foreigners to new citizens,
        Majority of new citizens vote the ruling party , from
        2000 to 2010, the new citizens made up 100k, that is
        5% of the electorate. Am I speculating that 90% of
        New citizens voted ruling party? Yes I am making a calculated
        Guess by asking my new citizens (statistical sampling)
        How much do you know of 1959 to 2012?
        In terms of politics, economics and govt issues?
        I maybe a mere Sg but I know more than you I believe

        Signed off
        Sg Born before 1959 and also lIved overseas
        And presently overseas, in and out of Sg, I am
        Retail shops, Mcdonalds, KFC, lOcal restAurants
        Full of foreigners doing jobs which were Once done
        By lOcal Sg before 1990? Where do the Sg go to?
        Do you think all of them became employers or like me
        Living overseas ???

  11. UK banker says:

    Hey guys, you all need to cool down a bit mate.. Why bother going to SIngapore? Singapore is such a shit place where people mind is just loaded with money! and nothing else… they though that they great but they are so tiny..their children is like robots… imagine millions of rates in a small tiny island.. no quality of life even though you’re ‘so called’ rich…

    • Sguk says:

      Yes, I agree, is a shit place because our govt wants
      Votes from new citizens as the present 60% may
      Become lesser.
      At least Europe and UK protect its citizens!
      So why are those daft Sg citizens still voted the
      Present govt in the past elections ?
      You have no bloody idea ? Do you know Sg
      Politics & democracy?
      Please come over become an opposition and
      Experience from 1959 to 2006
      UK. Given political asylum to TWP in 1976, he lost
      His Singapore citizenship for not being able to return
      To Singapore.
      When did we say Sg is great ? Dont think all the
      60 % think so !
      If you do not care about your life, you may care
      About your family !
      People Like to make sweeping statements without
      Doing reaearch
      Welcome all foreigners to Singapore, let that be her
      Downfall! We need another 6 milliOn foreigners to
      Make it 8 milliOn against 3 milliOn citizens!!

      Signed off
      Sg in UK

  12. What? says:

    Foreigners go back to your country!!

  13. What? says:

    Sick of your foreign guts and attitude!

  14. [...] An Indian perspective… Foreigner expat: Is $5,500 salary enough for me in Singapore?*|*Support Site for The Unemployed &amp… Quote: Posted by An indian perspective on 12 January 2011, 1:07:56 am I came to Singapore at [...]

  15. kuldeep kaur says:

    Am very poor girl from india .i want to work in your country with honest and hard work

  16. M.Ravikumar says:

    How can I get the visa to work there.

  17. Ryan says:


    I have had a young chap of 23 y.o just graduated uni from some god forsaken country who joined us at 3500 SGD and he was double promoted two years in a row because he was good with one middle of year promotion thrown in too

    Que) I suppose this is a role related to IT right? Since this is an IT industry Article.

    I agree that there are many dead wood locals here. I don’t need to know this at my current age of 32. I am also working in IT industry. been 7 years plus already.

    Didn’t you know that in a class of 40 students back in school days, there are something call class positions? There will always be a group of top 10% or top 5%, there will always be a group of average students..and a group of “dead wood” . Same here..those which you have interviewed or hired were most likely those average or dead wood.

    based on my personal view, I assume your IT company is not huge well known MNC right? because if it is not, even I won’t want to go for your interview. Does it make sense? Do you watch soccer? will Messi go for S-league trials ? or maybe J-League? then this S-league team coach complained..ahhh wah all these players came for our trial like shit..lousy…

    Think about it. If you want to attract talented locals or top performer, first of all are you Apple? Google? CoCa cola? IBM? if not you will get deadwood or just average with not so good experience ppl..for that 23 yr old forsaken guy..he joined you for stepping stone..isn;t it..didnt you and I did that when we first joined the workforce? correct me if I am wrong.

    • againsomeone says:


      I worked for IBM, Cisco and Oracle in Singapore and currently in another hi-tech MNC. I have seen enough dead wood (not just SGreans, mind you) in all of these. What I find interesting is that so many feel they are that good that they can do job based on just some paper qualifications. I call these “paper tigers” (unlike real “tigers” they are no good when it comes down to business), as you said only percentage of population are exceptional, majority is just average but read the comments and you get feeling of Lake Wobegon effect.

      According to comments just any young pink NRIC holder can do the job that Indian fella was offered.

  18. Jean says:

    Please also consider that an Indian foreigner age 25 equivalent to a local Singaporean guy around age 28. Reason being Indian normally graduate with bachelor degree at age of 20-22 while Singaporeans need to serve National service and different school systems, the graduate age will be around 25-26. I suppose this person already has around 4 years experience when he was 25.

  19. David says:

    To foreigners:

    I do welcome foreigners to work and live in Singapore. However I like to highlight to you something that you may not see because our government paint a very good picture in Singapore.

    Have you ever wonder why employer will like to employ foreigner over Singaporean when there are a lot of fresh graduates and unemployed experiences professional in Singapore?

    The answer is to employ you with a cheap salary but wait for long hours and the workplaces may not be safe to work in which is the reason why Singaporean do not wish to take up this jobs.

    Yes, you can used this 1st job as a stepping stone and later ask for higher salary for your 2nd job.

    Have you wonder why Singapore government complaint that Singaporean have to make more babies?

    Have you wonder why Singaporean complaint that money is not enough?

    Since we are all heavily loaded with works and having a low salary, where do we have the time and money to start as family as confirm by a lot of financial consultant (licence financial adviser representative as per MAS Act and Regulations)in term of self and family financial management.

    Lastly because you are working here, you needs to stay here. How much can you save to bring home after rental cost, foods, transport & etc? These does not include starting a family and etc. Think again if Singapore is really a good place to work compare to your home country.

    • David says:

      ‘The answer is to employ you with a cheap salary but WAIT for long hours and the workplaces may not be safe to work in which is the reason why Singaporean do not wish to take up this jobs.’

      Wrong spelling. The WAIT should be WORK!

  20. Nick says:

    I agree with many of you people here that Singaporeans are being cast aside by our own employers. Time and time again, I have stressed that jobs given to foreigners are not because they are cheap but because employers have the perception that all foreigners can do a better job than Singaporeans. That is more apparent for older singaporeans in their 40′s and 50′s. That is the reason why so many PMETs of this age range are unemployed. Our government needs to do something more for this age group. They need to provide free relevant training for these people to get them hired. Most of the up-grading courses are totally irrelevant and geared towards lower income groups. Its no wonder many citizens are dissatisfied.

    As Singapore aged, the senior citizens of Singapore will end up as the poorest group because they have no means of supporting themselves. CPF is definately not enough. This will happen sooner than what we can envision.

    I was an overseas grad, stayed abroad for 5 years, but returned home to Singapore with full of hope. That was back in 1989. Now at 49 years of age, I am jobless. Even though I have many years of experience, and physically very fit, computer savvy, I am still being pass over for younger people and foreigners who asked for higher pay and compensation. It just makes me feel like a third class citizen in my own country. That is really sad.

  21. Jayden says:

    You think $5.5k meager salary is enough to live in Singapore? Pay for house loans, COE, Taxes and other of their expensive policy and you’re left with pretty much nothing. Singapore government are known to be money sucking leeches. And where do these of our hard earned money goes to? Well, duh, officials and minister’s salary. Many say that Singapore is a forward country, I personally think Singapore is degrading, that is why you see a high percentage of young Singaporeans migrating to other country to survive while the government “attract” people dumb enough to accept their policy. If you have made up your mind, then into the fray you go. Goodluck, you’re gonna need it and you’re presence will make more Singaporeans lose their jobs.

  22. foreigner @ New Caledonia says:

    Hi David, SP Tan, Daniel Tan, Admin and other guys who are not welcoming foreigners in SG….

    I’m 32 years old engineer and have worked in 5 different countries and may be visiting many more before I retire from services. Every country has similar problems as in Singapore. Every country has locals jobless and almost all government tries to protect local jobs by restricting foreign workforce in a company. Most of the companies have to employ 60 to 90% of staff as local only, depending on country of company. All foreign workers are paid more than locals, in some cases double or triple the salary. All corporates wants to earn more and more profits and spend as less as possible, still they hire expensive foreigners….. Have you done an introspection????? why you are lagging and where???? All of you guys who think that local workforce (in your case SGporeans) are better than expats, you are not 100% right. as commented by “againsomeone”, not all guys are good, and the way you are commenting you all seems to be racist. If you are thinking that your are expert of the job, come out of your place and go to international market and try to compete with international skills, Go prove yourself, before making such comments as ‘paper tigers’……

    • Sgoverseas says:

      Which of the 5 countries you have worked employ
      67% of foreigners (2 million of 3 milliOn citizens)?
      I have yet to know of any country that gives out
      Work permit to be retail assistant, Mcdonalds, KFC
      Floor managers, erc, etc, etc, etc, etc..
      So are the 2 million foreigners working in Singapore
      Professionals & engineers and orhers like you?
      What has people race got to do with nationality?
      It disgust me when Sg are insulted for being called
      Racist! Nowhere in the world had more mixed races as
      Citizens since 1965 independence.
      Try having 32 million foreigners in UK of 80 million british
      And see what the British can accept

      Singaporeans are made of many races since I was
      Born before self govt rule in 1959.
      Obviously you think Sg ppl are not capable of working
      Are all foreigners working abroad better qualified then
      The locals?
      For me, I too have lived in a few countries (including USA, Europe,
      Australia, Philippines)
      I dont remember being given a work permit in those
      Countries to work as a what have you of the 2 million in Sg
      Before year 2003, the percentage was maybe 5 %
      I dont see USA has 67%, 200 million foreigners of 300 million citizens?
      Or Philippines ; how many PR & foreigners of 93 million. Filipino!
      I have very close blood relationship with filipinos so I know !
      I believe the Sg argument is about indiscriminate
      Mass influx of foreigners to turn them into new citizens
      To gain votes for the ruling party.
      You have no idea about Sg and its history apart from
      Reading wikipedia or living here for a couple of years.
      Do not make sweeping statements to conclude about
      These Sg being racists or that Sg are not capable of
      Working overseas.
      FULL OF RHETORIC from an engineer !

    • Sguk says:

      So you think foreigners working in other countries
      Would be paid two or three times
      Of course you mean a professional like an engineer ?
      According to you, if you work in say, USA or Japan,
      If the local engineers earn US$5,000 /mth, you
      As a foreigner would be earning 10k to 15k (ceteris paribus).
      And you believe that Singapore companies and MNC
      will pay all foreign professionals that amount?
      This according to you (introspection), the locals are
      Not as qualified as the foreigners.
      So according to you, any filipino engineer who work
      In the Middle East Or Singapore or USA or Japan should be paid
      2 or 3 times the local wage, in your case, of the
      Salary of the local engineer
      Where did you read that the local Sg professionals are
      100% more qualified that any foreigner? Which sg post
      Says that ?
      Any reflection on yourself or should I say introspection?
      Maybe you should be the Manpower minister of Sg
      As the present one is full of shxt !
      Otherwise, when you retire as an engineer, dont
      Forget to pay foreigners working in your country, 2 or
      3 times of the lOcal engineer, eg, 20K pesos becomes
      60K pesos, wonder a US engineer would go to work
      In Philippines on 60K /mth

      Signed off
      Sg in UK (replied using iphone, sorry for any typing errors,
      Real pain in the ass using an iphone but is easy on the

  23. It’s appropriate time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy. I have read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you few interesting things or tips. Maybe you can write next articles referring to this article. I wish to read more things about it!

  24. Sal says:

    Normally a migrant will accept any job that suits his/her qualification….once settle down with the accomodation, after about 6 months (local experience) they will job hop to better position/money in another company.

  25. WAN Tai Fu says:

    Hi guys,

    Very interesting to read the opinions of Singaporeans and foreigners, about this topic of foreign employment!

    I’ve lived in Singapore, as well as overseas for more than 5 years in each, and it’s true there are tonnes of foreigners in Singapore – more than many other countries (by percentage).

    Getting a job in Singapore can be tough – there’s no denying it, and we don’t always get the salary we desire!

    Just specifically to the high percentage figure that someone mentioned (67% foreign employment?), can I ask which industry that is? I ask this, because there are quite high concentrations of foreigners in certain industries.
    Construction – India / Pakistan / Sri Lanka / Bangladesh
    Food & Beverage – Philippines / Indonesia / Vietnam / Malaysia
    Production – Mainland China / Malaysia
    Finance, IT, management – India / Europe / Australia

    It depends where you look – to determine your perception of foreigners in Singapore. If you go to Raffles / Suntec, you will see many European / Australians in office attire. If you go to some industrial areas in Eunos or Woodlands, you will see tonnes of Bangladeshi / Pakistani workers in factory work attire. If you go to Geylang… I think you will see many ‘foreign’ workers there also!

    I think the high percentage of foreign employment is made up of ALL the above industries, not just the high-level office bumpkins.

    Question to Singaporeans – the construction / food & beverage / production jobs that foreigners are also taking : do you want to do it? I asked many Singaporean friends, and they all said “no, i don’t want to do that job!”

    • bb says:

      2 million foreigners of 3 million citizens is 67%
      I do not give a shit about in which industry?

      In the IT industry, maybe the percentage is higher,
      I hear a lot of Sg PMETs have been replaced by foreign Indians, pinoys, etc
      Are you saying the PMETs do not want these IT jobs or suddenly the fresh Sg graduates are not qualified.

      So you are doing a job that will not be replaced?
      Must be the PAP’s right hand man.
      Are you Sure, the PAP will not be voted out in 2016?
      Oh, I see new citizens will increase the 60% margin or maybe changed the law to do whatever you like or anything can be done secretly under ISA.
      Let see what happens when more Sg loses their jobs to foreigners.
      They can survive without dignity but not on empty stomachs and when their children go hungry!

      • Sam says:

        I have lived and worked in Singapore for more than 5 years and have visited the country for more than ten years; but i agree with the local Singaporeans (i am a Caucasian). I feel the PAP is doing a great disservice to the local Singaporeans. Why? Because i have 25 years of work experience in IT and in my last few roles here (all of them contract: i have found it impossible to get a permanent job), in every interview and in each role, my colleagues competing with me directly for the role or who are actually managing me, are Indonesians, Pinoys or China Mainlanders. I do not understand the policies of a government that is destroying the hopes and aspirations of its own citizens. Yes, i have worked in Singapore. While my field is fairly specialised, i am the first to admit that younger, skilled grads both local citizens and foreigners, deserve the job i am seeking and mainly, because they have the skills and are much younger (usually 1/2 my age). My point is simple: i came here to build a relationship with my girlfriend and we later married; but i worked in China for more than 2 years after i came here, because getting a job in Singapore is very difficult and i disagree that this is ONLY true for local Singaporeans; it seems there are just VERY FEW good jobs on offer in Singapore because the market IS SO SMALL. Having said this, why does your PAP Government even allow Pinoys and Indos to take PR and then take SENIOR MANAGEMENT JOBS? These jobs (which are the same jobs i am competing for) are in EXTREMELY LIMITED SUPPLY and, in my opinion, should be RESERVED EXCLUSIVELY for local citizens and foreigners should be told to fuck off. You see, while i compete with Pinoys, Indonesians, Indians and Chinese (not locals) for these jobs, i have seen on many ocassions that my interviewer is actually NOT EVEN A LOCAL SINGAPORE CITIZEN. I think this is a dammnable policy and the PAP should be overthrown for it.

  26. sal says:

    Construction, food & beverage or production, certain work level can employ local Sporeans….eg Supervisor, mid-level manager, technicians are jobs can be done by local Sporeans.

  27. Anon says:

    The reason why Sinkies say they don’t want to do jobs like production / construction / F&B etc etc is simply becoz of denial of a living wage as well as denial of basic workers rights. BTW, it’s no longer just the low-level menial jobs — many white-collar jobs are now having low depressed wages due to tons of ahneh and peenoi workers.

    In countries where you have higher level of human rights and workers rights, their local people don’t mind doing jobs like construction, bus driver, cleaner, F&B etc. Simply becoz they are paid a living wage that is able to allow them to bring up a family and to live in dignity.

    Otherwise, you will see countries like UK, Canada, Australia, NZ, Japan, South Korea etc all mass import banglahs, burmese, peenois, ahnehs, cheenas just like s’pore.

    To match S’pore, a country like Australia will be mass importing 9 million younger & cheaper foreigners already. But this will not happen in a country where the govt is held accountable to the citizens.

  28. jj@39 says:

    In S’pore, because PAP dislike so we don’t have minimum wage policy here. Since no minimum wage policy that means few have the no equal wage for equal job concept.

    There is also no employ S’porean first policy here so employers prefer to hire foreigners over S’poreans. Employers see foreigners doing those non PME jobs, blue collar jobs, laborious jobs as more cheaper, easy to exploit & more submissive than S’poreans.

  29. bbsg says:

    I may need to go back to Singapore for half a year. I cannot imagine the country where I was born and served 2 and half years fulltime NS and 13 years reservist training has taken steps to replace the born &bred citizens with foreigners.
    This slow and painful economic genocide can be worse than just killing me like what the govt in Syria is doing to its people.
    I have to stay alive for my young children.
    I will not give up as it is my country. The country does not belong to any ruling party, it belongs to the citizens !
    If my children die of starvation, all hell will break loose for me as I would not have anything left to lose !
    I hope I will not have to stay long in Sg this time.

    Signed off
    Sg overseas

  30. Proud Internationalist says:

    Hi to all SGians,

    Singapore was formed only a couple of years ago, may be decades, that is it. But countries like malaysia, china and burma are very old and ancient. In fact SG is but small portion of Malaysia. So, the strife to push foreigner out of singapore is stupid move, just because there are not enough locals talented enough to occupy positions. If you guys dont want foreigners then get ready to take power cuts, and transport delays, and other problems. Because, in singapore, if foreigner does not work, they can easily send him back, but that is not case with local. Some even appeal to thier MPs!!!!

    Capitalism is based on fair society, and singapore was built on era where meritocrazy reigned over favorism towards locals. government trying to impose limit of so many locals for every foreginers is insult to locals. if locals are so damn talented, then why cant the comnpanies hire them in first place… By protecting thier own citizens, singapore govt is spoiling its own citizens. Dunno how long this mockery and insult will continue. Plus rising cost and other factors are making singapore a bad place for saving money for foreigner. So we need not make it harder for them to spend thier time in this land.

    Last but not least, humbleness and politeness has taken us from ruins to greatness, and a fit of rudeness or unfairness will bring us back to ruins

    • jj@40 says:

      Before you start criticising Singaporeans for anti-foreigners or xenophobic. you better go find out what kind policies do UK, US, HK, Taiwan, SK, Japan, Australia, Germany etc have on protecting their citizens on jobs, education, housing etc issues.

      PayAndPay sucks.

  31. sunny says:

    @Proud Internationalist

    It shows you know nothing!
    Spore govt is not helping its citizens enuff, esp PMETs to restrict foreigner like youself out of this land.

    The mockery and insult is having ppl like you around occupying jobs for locals

    Wake up you!

  32. sg_daughter says:

    It really sickens me to the stomach that the Sing govt. has put Singaporeans in such a predicament subjecting them to insult upon injury by snide remarks from FWs such as those posted on this thread alone. The “UK banker” certainly doesn’t write or spell like one. Would it surprise me if it is some pinoy imposter? Hardly. They are well-known for denying their own true nationality with some in Sing already claiming to be born-in-Sing Singaporeans.

    It is a fact to those privy to such information that MOM approves work permits upon appeal by employers even after rejecting the first application. In one case, they even approved an FW with a public criminal record in an industry which exposes the FW to the very demographic of Sing clientele his record could potentially be a danger to. This is such a joke and mockery to the people of Singapore. I can’t begin to say how sorry I am that this is happening.

  33. Virender Singh says:

    hey i’m 32 year old guy. i wish to work in singapore. what type of work should i easily get. and what is the minimum salary i’ll get. and how much money required there to survive

  34. sal says:

    @Mr Singh, you just come here for a holiday and bring your CV along. Go to job employment agencies and check any jobs related to your CV and experiences….hopefully some hiring manager from your village will like you.Good luck!

    • Ravi says:

      Dear friends,

      You have no idea how lucky you people are to born in a country like Singapore.Check the living conditions and indexes of other south asian and east asian thankful to people who developed your country.there are billions of people in the region who can not even dream of getting a peaceful and safe lives like you Singaporeans.It is quite natural for foreigners like us to look for a job in Singapore with the economic conditions of our mother is like that you are complaining about your government policies.But remember,your govt is thousand times better than ours..

  35. Raj says:

    Hi Ravi,
    Agreed with you. I had a chance to work in US, JAPAN, Saudi Arabia apart from India. I strongly feel,
    Singapore is the best managed by country and full credit goes to
    the people to govern her. Such a progressive and balance approach can not be seen anywhere. Singaporean to consider them themselves to be very proud and lucky to work and live and here.
    My best wishes for ever.

  36. the game says:

    If you’re qualified, employer’s will hire you. Don’t like low paying jobs? But now complaining you’re government doesn’t protect your rights. Yes, I don’t know Singapore, I visited the country for just 3 days and in a very short period of time I see it’s a very expensive country to work and live in. If your country will hire me for a high salary of my demand, I couldn’t care less about your battle cry. If your country wouldn’t hire your young fresh graduates, highly qualified professionals, then why not find a job in other country. All you do is whine and complain, why don’t you put yourselves in the test and try finding a job in a foreign land. If you’re that confident about your qualifications but your country doesn’t want you to work for them, why continuously cry like a bunch of spoiled brats waiting for their parents to feed them. Explore your options if you have the qualifications. Don’t expect your country to give you special treatments just because you’re a local. It happens globally, if you’re a local with exceptional talent and very qualified, employer’s will drool all over you. But mediocre qualification and skill, don’t be too picky. That’s why other people call you racist, not me, just to be clear. If you truly believe you’re as qualified as the next foreign worker beside you, don’t push them out of your beloved country, compete with them head-on. And may the best employee wins.

  37. sal says:

    @ The game, why do you choose Spore in the first place? Why not US, Europe or Aus? Just becos you have a better advantage over the locals there you are big headed, if you go to the western countries you will end up as a cleaner or driving a taxi.

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