Singapore Business Insider Blog

Singapore Employment

The overall picture during Q2 2016 has been somewhat dim with overall increase of unemployment, slowing down of employment levels and increased layoffs by Singapore companies. However, the general unemployment rate is still at levels which would qualify “full employment” criteria in most western countries, factoring in normal fluctuations in employment patterns.

After employment growth in the first quarter of 2016, the second quarter has seen a decline. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in the second quarter stood at 2.1%, rising from 1.9% in the first quarter of this year. The rise is mainly attributed to subdued economic conditions around the world. Looking at specific sectors, the service sector accounted for most new jobs created with 8600 new jobs. On the other hand the manufacturing sector was the weakest one with 3,400 jobs less this quarter.

Total people in employment (residents and Singapore work pass holders) stood at 3,764,700 which was 1.3% more than a year ago.

Public Holiday 2016 Singapore
The complete list of public holidays in Singapore is always officially announced by the Ministry of Manpower in Singapore. This year, there are eleven public holidays. If you already established your business in Singapore and employ local talent or overseas workers on employment or other work passes, it is important to note the official regulations governing pubic holidays in Singapore. In case you need your employee to come for work during a public holiday, you need to give her a day off in lieu. Alternatively you can also opt to pay double the normal salary for that particular day if it is agreeable with the employee. Some public holidays as you will see fall on weekends. In that case you need to give a day off on an alternate day or compensate them for the missed holiday.
For 2016, these are the gazetted public holidays to be observed:

New Year’s Day: 1.1.2016 (Friday)

Chinese New Year: 8-9.2. 2016 (Monday & Tuesday)

Good Friday: 25.3.2016 (Friday)

Labour Day: 1.5.2016 (Sunday). The next Monday is public holiday.

Vesak Day: 21.5.2016 (Saturday)

Hari Raya Puasa: 6.7.2016 (Wednesday)

National Day: 9.8.2016 (Tuesday)

Hari Raya Haji: 12.9.2016 (Monday)

Deepavali: 29.10.2016 (Saturday)

Christmas Day: 25.12.2016 (Sunday). The next Monday is public holiday.

There are over sixty thousand now business registrations in Singapore every year. Altogether the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) oversees more than 431.000 companies at this point in time. Out of all the new company incorporations, around 50% are private limited companies. In terms of paid up capital, only half of all new formations have a sum higher than 10.000 SGD upon incorporation. At this point we would like to remind foreign entrepreneurs wishing to incorporate their company in Singapore and subsequently applying for the employment pass to choose paid up capital structures which are above 25.000, ideally 50.000 or more to maximize their chances of getting the employment pass in Singapore.
The other 50% of new company incorporations are made up of Sole Proprietorships, LLPs, PAFs (Public Accounting Firms), LPs and Partnerships. Against the 60,000 businesses registered in Singapore each year, there are 40,000 companies which close shop, leaving a net growth in the total pool of 20,000 new companies per year. Entrepreneurs are reminded at this point to follow the correct procedures of striking off a company with ACRA.
Interestingly the largest group of new business formations is in the IT industry. Followed by corporate training companies and accounting firms.
A net result of 20,000 additional companies each year is an impressive result for a nation as small as Singapore and testimony to the country’s thriving spirit of entrepreneurship. Especially in the infotech sector the Singapore government has deployed extensive resources in the last 10 years to create a large and thriving ecosystem. The poll results clearly show that this initiative has been successful.

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