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Singapore raises salary threshold for local workers

Companies in Singapore will have to pay local workers a minimum of S$1,200 (£698) a month from July 2018 in order for the worker to count in their ratio of local to foreign workers, Channel News Asia has reported.08 Mar 2017

Employers are allowed to hire foreign workers based on the number of full-time equivalent local workers they also employ. The current minimum salary is S$1,000 for a worker to count in this dependency ratio ceiling, Channel News Asia said.

Minister for state for manpower Sam Tan told the Singapore parliament that the salary was last reviewed in 2013 and should be adjusted to account for income rises, the news site reported.

"We review this salary threshold regularly to stay in line with income trends. If not, it means that we are gradually loosening our foreign worker controls simply due to rising nominal wages," Tan said.

"If we do not update the salary threshold now, it will mean having to make an even larger increase in future," he said, according to Channel News Asia.

The Ministry of Manpower is also keen to give lower-paid workers a sustainable wage increase, Tan said.

The salary threshold will be raised to S$1,100 from July 2017 and S$1,200 in July 2018. 

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