MAS urges financial firms to grow Singaporean talent pool
This comes after 47 employers were placed on watch list for discriminatory hiring practices
Financial institutions should continue to identify Singaporeans with high potential for leadership roles and expand the supply of talented locals, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said yesterday.
A week earlier the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) had said 47 employers were placed on a watch list for possible discriminatory hiring practices. Most were from the financial and professional services sectors.
MAS deputy managing director Jacqueline Loh told the SGUnited Financial Sector Jobs and Skills Fair: "We have to remain open and will continue to welcome global talent that complement our workforce. Employers must, however, hire in a responsible manner and commit to growing the local talent pool."
The financial sector created 22,000 jobs from 2015 to the end of last year, with three in four jobs going to locals.
The median monthly income of locals in the sector last year was $7,600, well above the national median of $4,600.
Employment in the sector is also estimated to have increased by about 1,500 in the first half of this year, with locals continuing to account for about 75 per cent.
Ms Loh noted that attracting firms to set up their regional or global headquarters here means they will bring a diversity of talent from their global workforce, which may affect the proportion of Singaporeans on the staff.
"However, anchoring more global and regional functions here also brings along more growth, good jobs and opportunities for Singaporeans.
"Further, it opens up possibilities for Singaporeans to tap the international footprint of these global financial institutions to gain overseas exposure, with some taking leadership positions overseas."
She added that most employers hire responsibly, ensuring they build up the number of talented locals, even as foreigners are brought in to plug gaps.
"Building a strong pipeline of local talent is key to supporting and sustaining a financial institution's long-term build-out in Singapore," Ms Loh said.
"It... facilitates their deeper appreciation of Singapore and the region's dynamics to facilitate better business outcomes as well."
MAS introduced an International Postings scheme in 2013 to place promising Singaporeans in overseas positions.
The scheme was enhanced this year to provide 90 per cent co-funding of qualifying costs for postings to South-east Asia and 70 per cent co-funding to other Asian locations.
MAS urged companies to ensure their hiring practices comply with MOM's Fair Consideration Framework.
It also called on companies to support their workers amid the pandemic and take a longer-term view in investing in their capabilities, such as reskilling them for new roles.
About 60 financial institutions have offered about 1,300 SGUnited Traineeship positions to fresh and recent graduates.
And around 50 firms have committed to hiring 900 Singaporeans over the next three years to be groomed for future leadership and specialist roles under structured talent development programmes supported by MAS.