Projection of foreign manpower demand for healthcare sector construction workers and foreign domestic workers
The National Population and Talent Division has released an Occasional Paper on the “Projection of Foreign Manpower Demand for Healthcare Sector, Construction Workers and Foreign Domestic Workers”. While our foreign workforce policies will continue to remain tight, a sustainable supply of manpower in the healthcare and built environment sectors as well as for foreign domestic workers is required to serve the needs of Singaporeans. Construction workers build our housing, transport and social infrastructure such as hospitals and educational institutes. Workers in the healthcare sector, particularly in Intermediate and Long-term Care, and foreign domestic workers, play a role in supporting the elderly, and families with children as our population ages. We will continue to work towards productivity improvements and where possible, train Singaporeans to enter these sectors.
The Occasional Paper seeks to illustrate the growth and change in the demand for workers in the abovementioned sectors, based on certain assumptions drawn from demographic and demand trends.
Singapore’s ageing population presents a rising demand for healthcare services and home-based care. The ageing population is projected to grow the demand for healthcare professionals and support care workers. The Government will continue to expand the resident healthcare manpower supply by expanding annual intake to healthcare training programmes, promoting back-to-practice schemes for trained healthcare professionals and supporting retiring staff who are keen to continue working. In addition, there are continued efforts to improve productivity in the healthcare sector so as to raise the skills and employability of healthcare staff, and in turn attract more Singaporeans into the sector. Nevertheless, we project a demand for 91,000 healthcare workers in 2030, of which about 28,000 are projected to be foreign healthcare workers compared to 13,000 foreign healthcare workers out of a total of 50,000 in 2011.
Foreign Domestic Workers
Foreign Domestic Workers (FDWs) provide care-giving support for families with elderly and children. Having FDWs to assist with care-giving duties allows seniors to continue living in a familiar environment with their families and loved ones around them as well as allow Singaporeans, especially women, to enter or remain in the workforce. With an expected increase in the number of resident households with young and/ or elderly, as well as an increase in number of households where both spouses are working, demand for FDWs could rise from 198,000 FDWs in 2011 to 300,000 FDWs by 2030.
Built Environment Sector
The construction workload is expected to increase as the Government ramps up infrastructure development such as the expansion of our rail network, launching more Build-To-Order housing projects, creating more social and educational facilities, and building more nursing homes and hospitals to cater to the ageing population. The Government has introduced measures to promote productivity in the built environment sector through the Construction Productivity Roadmap. Manpower policies have also been tightened to encourage more reliance on productivity improvements. Even with these measures, we expect demand for construction workers to remain strong in the next 2-3 years, from 250,000 in 2011 to about 280,000 in the next 2-3 years. With the projected productivity improvements, demand for construction Work Permit holders should be within the range of 250,000 to 300,000 by 2030.
The Occasional Paper on “Projection of Foreign Manpower Demand for Healthcare Sector, Construction Workers and Foreign Domestic Workers” is available for download here.
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For media enquiries, please contact:
Teo Yea Shi
Executive, Corporate Communications
National Population and Talent Division
Tel: 6325 0490