Singapore's employment rate rises to pre-COVID levels, according to Ministry of Manpower

Government expecting jobs recovery in 2022, but insists it will be uneven

Singapore's employment rate rises to pre-COVID levels, according to Ministry of Manpower

Singapore's resident employment rate rose above pre-COVID levels, according to the Ministry of Manpower's (MOM) advance release of the annual Labour Force in Singapore 2021.

According to MOM, the increase in resident employment rate was down to efforts under the SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package.

Employment rate for residents aged 15 and above increased to 67.2% in June 2021, higher than the 64.5% in June 2020, and way above the 65.2% in June 2019.

"This reflected economic recovery and the impact of measures such as the SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package, Jobs Support Scheme and Jobs Growth Incentive on the labour market," read the release.

The employment rate also increased across demographic profiles, with youths (aged 15 to 24) recording 37.2%, those aged 25 to 64 reporting 81.8%, and seniors aged 65 and above tallying 28.5%.

"While demand for temporary manpower arising from COVID-related activities contributed to higher employment, the number of residents in permanent jobs also grew," MOM said.

The vast majority of resident employees were permanent ones at 88%, growing by 50,900.

Read more: MOM reviews policy for Employment Pass holders

Meanwhile, resident unemployment rates eased to 5.1% in June 2021 from the 6.4% in 2020. Time-related under-employment also dropped to 3.5% from 4.1% last year.

According to MOM, the labour market is expected to further recover in 2022, but it will be uneven across sectors.

"The labour market gradually recovered in 2021, although it has not fully returned to pre-COVID conditions. We expect the labour market recovery to continue in the second half of the year and into 2022, but in an uneven manner across sectors," it said.

Employers and workers will continue receiving support from the SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package, as the government focuses on "preserving human capital and developing local workers through skills upgrading to prepare for jobs of the future."

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