The Manpower Ministry claims that the upcoming Overseas Networks & Expertise Pass is meant to lure top foreign talent (or Super FTs as we like to call them), to Singapore.
One of the criteria for such Super FTs is they must have earned a fixed monthly salary of S$30,000, or will be earning that amount under their Singapore employer.
But does earning S$30,000 a month as a baseline salary make these guys truly super FTs?
Let’s take a leaf from the book of former Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong.
Woody said in 2018 that ministers salaries aren’t high enough with this explanation:
“To any one of us here, S$1 million is a lot of money. So where do you want to get your ministers from? From people who earn only S$500,000 a year, whose capacity is S$500,000 a year? So (when) I look for ministers, anybody who wants to be paid more than half a million, I won’t take him. You are going to end up with very very mediocre people, who can’t even earn a million dollars outside to be our minister. Think about that. Is it good for you, or is it worse for us in the end?”
Exactly, think about it – Super FTs are supposed to be so much better than regular FTs and Singaporeans, but with this kind of a criteria set by MOM, aren’t they just “mediocre” are best, if not “very very mediocre”?
And even before ex-ESM Goh’s remarks came the comment from his wife, who said that the S$600,000 salary of disgraced former National Kidney Foundation chief TT Durai was “peanuts”.
That amount of peanuts is the equivalent of roughly S$50,000 a month.
So, is this new work pass scheme by MOM just a ruse to allow more foreign workers and their dependents to work in Singapore?
And by the time these Super FTs decide that maybe they might want to become New Citizens, will MINDEF make them serve NS since they would be enjoying a certain level of economic benefits?