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Singapore PM highlights inflation, immigrants, birth rate concerns

BlueCat

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#1
Posted: 17 August 2008 1939 hrs


Photos 3 of 3




SINGAPORE: Inflation, foreign workers and parenthood issues featured prominently in Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's National Day Rally speech to the Chinese community on Sunday.

Prime Minister Lee acknowledged that inflationary pressures on living costs and the pressure from new immigrants in the job market remain the immediate concerns of Singaporeans. But he also urged them not to ignore long-term challenges, like encouraging people to get married and start a family.

The integrated resort at Marina Bay is taking shape. Along with Resorts World at Sentosa, the two multi-billion-dollar projects will provide 20,000 new jobs.

But with a low unemployment rate of 2.3 per cent, there just aren't enough Singaporeans to fill all the positions. So, more foreign talent have arrived to support the workforce.

Stressing that the government's responsibility is to Singaporeans, Prime Minister Lee gave the assurance that new immigrants will not compromise on opportunities for Singaporeans.

Mr Lee said: "Our economy has become more vibrant and diversified because of foreign workers. Without their participation, there will not be enough Singapore workers to grow the economy. Foreign talent also strengthen our ranks in sports. Our performance at the Beijing Olympics demonstrates this. Because we welcome talent, we can compete above our class."

On inflation, Prime Minister Lee acknowledged that many Singaporeans are feeling the heat of rising living costs. So, Mr Lee said, more will be done at the grassroots level to help needy families.

A second instalment of Growth Dividend, or cash payouts to share the nation's budget surpluses, will be given out in October.

This year, some S$3 billion has been set aside to help Singaporeans cope with hard times. Apart from assistance packages, Mr Lee said the government will try to restrain cost increases whenever possible.

Apart from the immediate concerns, a longer-term challenge is getting more Singaporean couples to have more babies.

At the Rally, Mr Lee said Singapore's Total Fertility Rate (TFR) of 1.29, which is far short of the replacement level of 2.1, is worrying.

"(The) problem is acute for Chinese, whose TFR is 1.14. This means each family only replacing either the father or mother. (The) numbers will decline rapidly in a few generations," he said.

Another closely-linked topic is to encourage young people to get hitched. Some have put off marriage to advance their careers or they could not find a partner.

To this end, Mr Lee remarked candidly that perhaps the People's Association could organise "Parental Matchmaking Sessions" in Singapore too. Such sessions are a popular activity in Beijing, where parents meet, exchange information and find suitable partners for their children.

But Mr Lee admitted that these are personal matters which the government can only facilitate.

The Prime Minister also identified the challenges of new media and promoting gracious living as other important long-term problems for Singapore.
fresh and hot from Channelnewsasia on the National Day's Speech by PM
 

BlueCat

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#2
birth rate is of special concern for us.
we the majority here,are not producing enough babes to cover for the losses thru death.

this maybe also one of the reason,why we are encouraging those PRs to take up citzenship to try to make-up for the shortfall.

if not i believe in 5 to 10 years,we will lose our majority here. if this day comes,it will be a disaster for us.

i am not trying to create racism here,if someone is offended by my post.
please accept my sincere apology.
 

madmansg

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#3
Mr Lee said: "Our economy has become more vibrant and diversified because of foreign workers. Without their participation, there will not be enough Singapore workers to grow the economy. Foreign talent also strengthen our ranks in sports. Our performance at the Beijing Olympics demonstrates this. Because we welcome talent, we can compete above our class."
====================

so he saying that sg NS slaves low class ? Well I have to agree on this point !
 

myfoot123

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#4
Mr Lee said: "Our economy has become more vibrant and diversified because of foreign workers. Without their participation, there will not be enough Singapore workers to grow the economy. Foreign talent also strengthen our ranks in sports. Our performance at the Beijing Olympics demonstrates this. Because we welcome talent, we can compete above our class."
====================

so he saying that sg NS slaves low class ? Well I have to agree on this point !
He is indirectly criticising Ng Eng Hen for not coming out with a good education systems thus resulting in lack of Singaporean Talent. The Ng Chin Hen still earned his undeserving million nonetheless.
 

madmansg

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#5
<<
Stressing that the government's responsibility is to Singaporeans, Prime Minister Lee gave the assurance that new immigrants will not compromise on opportunities for Singaporeans.
>>

Is LHL a retard ? how is serving NS for 2 years not a compromise on opportunities for singaproeans ? Unless FT also serve NS also lor ! Or abolish NS. So what is it going to be ?

<<
Another closely-linked topic is to encourage young people to get hitched. Some have put off marriage to advance their careers or they could not find a partner.
>>

how to get young people to get hitch when they are in the SAF unless he want gay marriage ?

In short to summarise LHL speech NS IS KILLING SG.
 

Himerus

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#7
bro madmansg,

nowaday,there are also some very chio and hot gals in the SAF.
so that should not be an excuse.
it is just that degree is very common as all of them are so smart.
so they will have to get additional or higher papers else scare of losing out.
 

ahbengsong

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#8
I care for the pap... so maybe I register my two kids + 1 more in the future as sgp citizens... that will help to boost the TFR by 0.000001%.... only doing my little bit for singapore....

beng
 
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