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     FrontPage Edition: Wed 31 January 2007

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Employment situation in 4th quarter 2006

Source: www.mom.gov.sg

EMPLOYMENT SITUATION IN FOURTH QUARTER 2006:

2006 saw record high employment creation for locals

Employment
The strong economy continued to generate record employment gains.
Preliminary estimates show that total employment grew by 48,800 in the fourth quarter of 2006, considerably higher than the gains of 35,300 in the same period a year ago, and up from 43,000 in the third quarter of 2006.
All major sectors registered employment growth in the fourth quarter of 2006. The bulk of the gains continued to come from services (32,300), supported by seasonal hirings for year-end festivities.
Manufacturing and construction also continued to post increases in employment of 10,200 and 5,900 respectively.

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Total employment creation for the whole of 2006 hit an all-time high of 173,300, surpassing the previous year¡¯s gains of 113,300. This brought the total number employed to 2,493,200 as at December 2006.
Local employment grew by a new record high of 88,200 in 20061, up from gains of 63,500 in 2005. This exceeds the normal increase in local labour supply of around 33,000 a year, boosted by more people entering the labour force, amid increased job opportunities2.
Against a larger base of jobs created, locals took up slightly over half (51%) of the total employment created in 2006.
Foreign employment rose by 85,100 in 2006, enabling the economy to grow beyond the limits of Singapore¡¯s indigenous workforce.
In contrast, during the difficult years of 2001 to 2003, foreigners bore the brunt of job losses (Table 1.2). As at December 2006, there were 756,300 foreigners, forming 30% of the total employment pool. Although slightly higher than 29% a year ago, the foreign share is lower than 31% in December 2000.

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Retrenchment
Preliminary findings from a survey of private sector establishments with at least 25 employees show that 3,000 workers were retrenched in the fourth quarter of 2006. This is higher than the 2,435 retrenched in the previous quarter, but lower than 3,200 in the same quarter a year ago.
The majority of the workers were retrenched from the manufacturing sector (2,400), reflecting the on-going restructuring in the electronics industry. Another 600 of the workers laid off came from the services industries.

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Total retrenchment for the whole of 2006 was 12,200. Although this is higher than 10,294 in 2005, it is only about half the number retrenched in 2001 (25,838). Manufacturing formed the bulk of retrenchments (8,800), followed by services (3,000) and construction (400) in 2006.

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More.....

1 The data series for total employment change started in1978, but breakdown into locals and foreigners was available only from 1982.

2 The increase in resident (local) labour supply averaged 32,900 a year from 2000 to 2004.

Source: www.mom.gov.sg Press Release 31 Jan 2007

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