News and views from an unique perspective

Singapore is a good place for ‘FTs’ to earn money, but not to retire

Posted by temasektimes on June 30, 2012

I did not lose my job to a FT, but I know of people who did. I have never said they were cheaper in any of the things I have written. The closest thing I ever written was ‘I was slightly better paid’ and please do not quote me out of context.

You are right about the FT having equal wages from places like Mumbai and Shanghai.

So why did they not stay back in their country and get equal wages?

It is because many of them are unable to find job back in their homeland because of various reason.

Many of my friends from Shanghai have also told me about their plight back in their homeland (No friends from Mumbai). They are not able to secure a job due competition, lack of ‘connections’ and some corrupted government officials. Shanghai have the same cost of living, but they have rural areas and the cost of living drop significantly and the quality of life is better than in Singapore.

They also pointed out to me that their government may be corrupted, but they protect their citizens should any foreigners say anything bad about them. They can migrate within their country to a place where housing and cost of living are cheaper. Water, electric, gas, internet and mobile services are all significantly cheaper. They only have 1 party, but they can protest and basically ‘force’ their government to listen to them. It is unlawful to protest in Singapore. Their elderly who live in rural area can have compensation when they grow old as they have contributed to the building of China. In Singapore, your money is locked up with a minimum sum of 131k and it was your money to begin with. Also, some people might not even have that much money in their CPF by the time they hit retirement age.

They have the option to buy lands and properties back in their homeland with whatever they earn here. They can retire and live a decent life with no worries after that. They can see the light at the end of the tunnel before they even hit 40, but are Singaporeans able to do that?

These are the basic framework of the plan 3/4 of my FT friends have.

Work and suffer until the end of the contract. Be thrifty and just save up what ever you have, buy a property in Singapore and make full use of CPF. End of contract, sell the property, withdraw all CPF funds, go back and enjoy life in a landed property. And by that I do not mean 20 or 30 years, I mean 10 years or so depending on where they come from.

Just a side note, they are horrified to see so many people working at their golden age in the hawker centers. It is rare to see people like that back in China and the elderly normally choose to work at his/her age volunteeringly. For Singaporean, there is no choice regarding that matter for many of the middle/lower income group.

To sum it up, many of them felt that Singapore is a good place to earn money, but not a good place to retire. It is also the main reason why they choose to remain PRs.

I am not expecting myself to live in a landed property in Singapore, but I wanted a home that I can live in comfortably and not to have to worry about medical fees or other unforseen events by the age of 65.

I have to work 9 hours a day for 6 1/2 days and more should it get busier. When I take the upgrade course, I have to go for it 3 times a week, and 5 hours each excluding travelling, will I be able to function at my 100% while I am at work? Will my mental status be adequate and not cause any errors while I work? When the company is busy, is my boss kind enough to let me go? The ‘bring home’ work and the course assignments had to be juggled as well. I had to go for resevice and IPPT and I had to literally beg my boss to let me go. Are these reasons good enough for you to understand my concerns about losing my job?

I do agree that there are people out there that have work ethic issues. I also agree that we need to constantly upgrade ourselves. However, I disagree that you tried to imply that Singaporeans are not willing to improve ourselves and also people who have work ethic issues do not apply to Singaporeans only. And also, do you have a family? Do you think you can be replaced easily? Do you save enough to withdraw your money from the CPF by 55?


* The above was first posted as a comment on The Temasek Times.


18 Responses to “Singapore is a good place for ‘FTs’ to earn money, but not to retire”

  1. mahbok tan said

    Our GOVT of the DAY are arrogant and DO NOT TAKE CARE of its CITIZEN , only their own people are safe but the rest of the citizen are in a bad state of affair.

    LKY and group pf people built up SGpore and his son and his forty thieves are the reversed …… poor SGporean like us are left to think about our own future…..!!!!! Wait a minute , did Goh CT still around or he already balek kampong to Pahang playing golf with Najib…???? Did he not promise to bring up our living standard to that of “SWISS STANDARD” ? So how come he did not achieve it with pride but arrogant !!! And I thought somebody have apologies and willing to listen to its citizen???? Any change or improvement?????

    I hope our future GOVT of the DAY , will put its CITIZEN priority as No:1 . Be it their social security , welfare and well being of their career/job. Or a Change will help to create lights in the end of the tunnel….lets work hard dear fellow citizens or we all will die in destitute…!!!

    • Audrey said

      be very careful about what you write here. A lot of foreigners who are hiring managers read this and they don’t give you a job. They protect their own. Have you seen how MNCs are dominated by whites and Indians? Are they really better than locals? So what if they have a degree from Ivy league with GPA, you can get that with money. As for retiring, no sane foreigners will do that here. They will I’ve up their PR, sell their expensive HDB or Exec Condo and then head back to their country. Even the americans can retire in Bali and have a great life. Singapore is now becoming an island for the immigrants who are here to rape and plunder our country and the government especially immigration and MOM who continue to endorse work permits and PRs without thinking. Do you know why? 60% of our civil servants are PRs, They have their own corrupt ways. TRue blue sinaporeans will be serving the foreigners food and cleaning the tables soon. Have your say. Fight against the tyrant who has made our lives living hell!

  2. Singapore Talent said

    Well said!

  3. Alan Lau said

    Exactly on the spot! This is the very reason why until now even after NS, i refuse to take up citizenship.

    • very sad said

      My previous work mate despite serving his NS and ICT, he is still a S’pore PR despite being invited to take up citizenship.
      At least he has a choice and has made a wise decision, S’porean sons have no choice at all.

  4. Singaporean said

    Well in Beijing, the city area, China government encourage their ppl to retire early. Some as early at 45 esp for those who work in unhealthy environment like traffic police and for the rest about 55. When they retire, they get pension for contributing to the country. Also, they enjoy free public transport like bus and even free entrance to attraction areas like summer palace. They are so lucky.

  5. RU YI Gee said

    There is no tunnel to the life of the Singaporean unless someone can changes it..I like the sentences ” Singapore is a good place to earn money, but not a good place to retire.”

  6. Pantatko said

    Cialat ah…things are getting worse in sgp…sgp is no longer a place to call home already. Work work work pay pay pay…die also have to pay many many…

  7. How To Retire said

    Yesterday my daughter told me that both she & her husband have to fork out $1,700 per mth from their CPF to pay for their HDB housing loan. The loan duration is for 30 yrs and based on their current ages, they will need to work till age 62 to repay the loan with not much savings in their CPF ordinary account! My youngest son told me he will stay with me as buying a flat/apartment will be too stressful for him. I am worried for the next generation.

    • Be a quitter said

      Ask your next generation to migrate, that is probably the only way out, do not have high hope for GE2016.

  8. solaris8899 said

    good said.
    do see the trends happen in my present co…all the so called FTs came to work here make higher $$$ than us, creating a lot of non-productive work, then they pack and back home..

  9. spotlessleopard said

    The only WAY to solve this intractable problem is to vote out the PAP in GE2016…..

    • not easy said

      It will be an uphill task to vote them out in GE2016 as they are everywhere in every industry.
      What opp parties can do is to unite as unity is strength, go for GRCs and SMCs in the east side as the wind of change is blowing to the east side.

  10. Foxy said

    I was told by f trash that SG is a good place to make money, after making dar bao back origin home!

  11. knn said

    Go public Uni 2c unproductive work.
    Lots of them are immigrants and incompetent staff. Yet we have so much budget for them

  12. bacarrat said

    Greedy global capitalism = modern day colonialism. The only real difference is that nationalism has been replaced with capitalism. Both systems serve to conquer and enslave

    • wtf said

      Think about this for a min. Singapore was nothing before British colonial rule. Migrant slaves only started pouring in after Raffles founded this country. Today, we are seeing the same exodus under the name of capitalism. The colonialists in the past couldn’t have care less about this country. They were here after all to milk it for what its worth. The migrant slaves on the other hand made it their permanent home, overcoming hardship and adversity to build this nation to become what it is today. If it wasn’t for the sacrifices they made, this country may not even considered attractive to foreigners. Ironically because of this success, this same govt which led the early generation out of colonial slavery, now leads their decendents into capitalist slavery by doing what the colonialists did during their time – allowing an influx of migrant slaves. Are they any better than the British colonialists?

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