SINGAPORE: Secretary-General of the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) Lim Swee Say said Saturday that one of the country's big challenges is producing enough goods and services against the backdrop of a manpower shortage in Singapore.
Unlike most countries, Singapore cannot just export or consume more, said Mr Lim in his May Day message.
While all countries strive to be more "competitive to break the bottleneck of demand, we must also become more productive and innovative to break the bottleneck of supply," he said.
To succeed on both fronts, Mr Lim said Singapore needs to learn to make smarter use of technology, innovation, capital and know-how to be more "future ready" than its competitors.
And above all, given the country's tight manpower situation, he said companies must learn to value "every worker regardless of age, gender, qualification, background and physical condition".
"There is no guarantee that we will always succeed but we cannot afford to get it wrong," he said.
Get it wrong, and growth will be slower and Singapore will suffer the pains of higher unemployment, lower employment rates and even stagnation of wages, added Mr Lim. - CNA/jc
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