Singapore’s Minister of Manpower Josephine Teo spoke on the three key initiatives that would be essential in strengthening tripartism to overcome disruptions related to politics, demographics, and technology.
During her speech at the Workplan Seminar held on 28 May 2018, Teo elaborated on the three disruptions:
1. Citing the results of the recent Malaysian election, she pointed out the importance of keeping an ear to ground concerns and addressing these to maintain trust with the public. For example, in Singapore, the concern about wages stagnating.
2. Within demographics, she pointed to the trends of declining fertility and increased life expectancy. For example, in the last decade, more than half of the world’s population live in countries with below replacement TFR.
3. She also touched on the changes expected with the increasing efficiency of technology. She maintains that technology will transform jobs instead of eliminating them, as well as create jobs in new industries, providing examples from ICA and Amazon.
Teo noted: “The wave of disruptions to global businesses will have an uncertain impact on familiar work arrangements. As a result, the interests of employers and workers could diverge. In other words, we must expect tripartism to come under pressure.”
To tackle this, she revealed four commitments to strengthen tripartism in Singapore:
- To reaffirm a shared ownership of the future.
- To innovate with shared values in mind.
- Re-commit to the shared vision of inclusive workforce and progressive workplaces.
- Leverage our shared resources to address fresh challenges.
To make these a reality, the Minister talked about three initiatives:
1. Tripartite Workgroup on Older Workers (TWG-OW)
-Ensure an inclusive workforce and progressive workplaces that values older workers.
-Review the longer-term relevance of the retirement and re-employment age. -Consider the next moves on the retirement and re-employment age.
-Examine the CPF contribution rates for OWs and their impact on retirement adequacy.
2. Enhanced Inclusive Growth Programme (IGP) for Lower-Wage Workers
-To expand the use of the IGP to support more companies in efforts to raise productivity.
3. Skillsfuture For Enterprises (SFE) to boost Human Capital development
-Putting in place HR systems, structures and processes and transforming companies’ HC practices to provide better training and development for their employees.
-The pilot targets to engage 1,000 companies across the 23 ITM sectors on the adoption of HC development initiatives.
-The full roll-out will be expanded to 10,000 companies over five years.
Photo / TAFEP