For the first time since 2013, the largest companies in all of Singapore created more jobs than the smaller and medium-sized businesses did – a sign of a slowing of the Singapore economy as the country struggled a little bit in the face of lower domestic demand and a dip in global trade.
Major companies in Singapore (any company with a revenue of more than $100 million or a company employing at least 200 employees) added close to 4300 brand-new jobs to the Singapore economy in 2016 – more than double vanity 2100 new jobs that were created by companies that are smaller than that.
The Ministry of Manpower released this study in early 2017, and while some had predicted this to be the case based off of the anecdotal evidence along, many throughout the world of business in Singapore were rather surprised by just how many more jobs larger businesses had created compared to smaller operations.
Small business has always been a foundational bedrock for the economy of Singapore, making up for close to 70% of employment in the country. Nearly 99% of all the companies in the country of Singapore are classified as small or medium-sized businesses, and the Singapore government has always looked favorably towards the smaller operations as a hotbed of innovation, a driver of local commerce, and a real sign of the entrepreneurial spirit that the people of Singapore enjoy.
Unemployment rates in the heavily export oriented economy of Singapore also hits a six year high in 2016. Close to 8200 jobs were added to the economy in 2016 (compared to the 23,000+ jobs that have been added to the economy in 2015, showing signs of extreme sluggishness that is unprecedented in this country.
This is a continuation of a slowdown trend that the Singapore government has been keeping a close eye on ever since 2012/2013. In 2013, for example, the economy added 131,000 new jobs – close to 55% of them coming from larger organizations.
All of this slow growth has Singapore business people, investors, and those in the financial community a little bit nervous about the short-term prospects of the Singapore economy, but no one – in Singapore for around the global community – considers this to be a long-term trend.
The Singapore government has already started to heavily and aggressively invest in the entrepreneurial community inside of Singapore and throughout the rest of the world, and new major initiatives from the government are designed to attract global business to Singapore in an effort to really expand growth at a pace that hasn’t been seen in close to 10 years.
Singapore has always been a nation dedicated to expansion, growth, reinvention, and innovation. It would be a very, very dangerous misstep to assume that Singapore is going to be knocked down and out by this slow down for the sluggish economy that they are now dealing with. This was, after all, the same country that weathered the catastrophic global economy that crippled countries like Greece and Spain just 10 years ago.
Singapore will bounce back, and will do so sooner rather than later!