Job vacancies have increased to a new high of 128,100 in the first quarter of 2022, according to figures released by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).
As border measures relax, the ministry says it expects non-resident worker inflows to recover, which will provide some relief to the current labour market tightness.
“At the same time, the deterioration of the external economic environment, due in part to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, has weakened the demand outlook for some of our outward-oriented sectors. This may in turn cool labour demand going forward. As such, firms should press on with restructuring and transformation to maintain their competitiveness,” says the ministry in its June 17 statement.
“The government will continue to support our firms to do so, while at the same time upskilling local workers for new jobs,” it adds.
Total employment has continued to expand by 42,000, excluding migrant domestic workers in the 1Q2022. Most of the total employment growth were from non-residents as border restrictions were progressively lifted.
While resident employment has grown beyond pre-pandemic levels at 3.9%, non-resident employment in March 2022 remained 15% below December 2019.
See also: Global headwinds and slower growth may weigh on labour demand going forward, says MOM
Unemployment rates are also continuing to trend down to pre-pandemic levels from an overall high of 3.6% to 2.2%.
The resident long-term unemployment rate stood at 0.8%, remaining slightly higher than the 0.7% at the pre-pandemic level.
The number of retrenchments at 1,320, dipped to a record low, and a higher re-entry rate (72%) was observed among residents, six months post retrenchment.
Resignation (1.7%) and recruitment rates (2.5%) have also remained stable this quarter, after trending up in the previous quarters.