In 2022, Singapore’s employment levels grew by an unprecedented 231,000 according to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) which released a preliminary report on Tuesday, 31st January.

The growth was driven mainly by non-resident employment mainly in the manufacturing and construction sectors. These sectors are typically reliant on foreign workers.

As the Singapore economy opened up after the pandemic, there was a huge demand for workers in the manufacturing and construction sectors and this drove the huge increase. This rebound was due to the lifting of the border restrictions and employers in the manufacturing and construction sectors rushed to fill these positions.

Resident employment also grew in 2022 but at a slower pace than the preceding year.

The tight labour market and post-pandemic economic growth led to an improvement in the labour market as compared to the year before. Overall unemployment in 2022 was at 2.7 per cent with resident unemployment at 2.9 per cent and citizen unemployment at 3 per cent.

That being said, 2023 is expected to be a year where unemployment rates inch higher as the economy cools. We have been seeing a spate of recent retrenchment, especially in tech-related sectors.