Model ID: 27618a87-522e-4f9a-8d9b-a2a297ad1a4a Sitecore Context Id: 27618a87-522e-4f9a-8d9b-a2a297ad1a4a;

NTUC Supports Government’s Forward Singapore Exercise; Commits to Building on Workers’ Compact

NTUC Secretary-General Ng Chee Meng urges union leaders to help chart the way forward for Singapore’s future.
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By Ian Tan Hanhonn 28 Jun 2022
Model ID: 27618a87-522e-4f9a-8d9b-a2a297ad1a4a Sitecore Context Id: 27618a87-522e-4f9a-8d9b-a2a297ad1a4a;

NTUC will support the 4G leadership’s efforts to review and refresh Singapore’s social compact, as well as the Government’s plan to plot Singapore’s roadmap for the next decade and beyond.

NTUC Secretary-General Ng Chee Meng, who spoke on behalf of the Labour Movement, made the commitment during the launch of the Forward Singapore Exercise on 28 June 2022.

Forward Singapore was launched by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Lawrence Wong at the NTUC Centre, as part of a tripartite dialogue with union leaders,  Government representatives and management partners.

Through the Forward Singapore Exercise, the 4G leadership hopes to review and refresh Singapore’s social compact and set out a roadmap for the next decade and beyond.

Given the challenges and changes that the world is currently facing, Mr Ng believes that it was an important time for Singapore to collectively chart the way forward.

Mr Ng said: “We welcome this exercise because we believe that this will be a key component for the success of Singapore in the future. As Secretary-General, I think that this augurs well for my workers – all different working classes including PMEs.”

Forward Singapore

The Forward Singapore Exercise is a collective effort led by Mr Wong and his 4G leadership team.

It will be organised along six key pillars, of which all will be talking into account Singaporean’s concerns before reviewing and updating of policies.

The six pillars are: (1) empowering Singaporeans to have lifelong employability, (2) equipping Singaporeans with opportunities through education and lifelong learning, (3) caring for Singaporeans through health and social support, (4) building a more livable home for all who stake their future in Singapore, (5) to steward a more sustainable future, and (6) to unite our sense of belonging as a nation. 

Speaking at the event, Mr Wong said that it was befitting that the exercise was launched at an NTUC tripartite dialogue.

He said: “NTUC has played a crucial role in shaping our social compact since the early years of our nation building.

“Our unions steadfastly protected the interests of our workers – to get a fair deal. They persuaded workers to abandon strife and conflict, and work with employers instead. In turn, the Government provided a stable and conducive environment – that importantly enabled businesses to grow and create jobs, and to share the fruits of progress with all workers.”

Mr Wong added that the tripartite partners have kept faith with the values and beliefs set out at the founding of our nation, and that Singaporeans must hold on to these values as the nation writes its next chapter.

Thoughts by Youth and Union Leaders

Several youth leaders took the opportunity to raise their concerns at the dialogue.

While most largely spoke in support of the exercise, many spoke of opportunities and challenges facing both Singapore and the world.

Meanwhile, Union of ITE Training Staff General Secretary Elson Koh shared that while he appreciated the opportunities that the Singapore education system has presented him, he hoped that with the engagement, more could be done so that ITE students have more opportunities upon graduation.

On the Forward Singapore Exercise, ST Engineering Staff Union General Secretary Sazali Zainal shared that the unions would do their part to gather ground feedback to aid in this conversation moving forward.

“Overall, the Forward Singapore Exercise is a good move by the Deputy Prime Minister. It is good that the Government wants to engage the ground in its policy making efforts,” he said.