Singaporean core in banking and finance

Tharman said this at the Association of Banks annual dinner, ‘Our vision is to be a financial centre that is among the leaders globally in workforce skills and expertise, and one with a strong core of Singaporeans at every level.’ This statement prompts a lot of questions as to why the need for such a statement and what happened that resulted in this statement.

Singapore as a financial centre has always been our mission since the 70s and we have been the top financial centre in the league of Tokyo and Hongkong. And for two decades, Singaporeans were in charge, the top financial talents were Singaporeans. What happened after that? What happened to all the Singaporean finance talents that today we are faced with a dearth of Singaporean finance talents that almost every top finance and banking jobs must go to a foreigner? And when a job is vacant there will be a mad rush to look for a foreigner as they could not find a Singapore to fill it? To the people responsible to fill these positions, Singaporeans are misfits in the finance industry.

Some may take this lightly like a non issue, but is a very serious issue. It is mismanagement of our human resource in the finance and banking sector. It is negligence, dunno on whose part, that we have reached such a dire strait. Is there anyone who is supposed to oversee this manpower need? It cannot be that such an important function was left to chance. Under Goh Keng Swee, his fingers were on the pulse of the finance industry and Koh Beng Seng was clearly instructed and given the task to ensure that Singaporeans would be groomed to take over the top jobs in the banking and finance industry.

What happened? No body knows I guess. No body cares? Was this policy abandoned, dropped like a coconut and not to be remembered? Or was there a change in policy to let foreigners to take over the banking and finance industry and Singaporeans were left out of the picture? Would anyone want to take responsibility for this fiasco, a sell out of Singaporeans in a very important industry that is now controlled and dominated by foreigners?

You mean no one knows what is happening? Sure no one knows or else someone’s head will be on the chopping block for such a gross mistake. Are we back to square one, to want Singaporeans to be in charge in the banking industry?

Now that Tharman is talking about the next 10 years to salvage a bad situation by ‘a string of programmes and initiatives, paving the way forward for Singapore with less emphasis on academic qualifications and more focus on the mastery of professional and technical skills,’ I am puzzled, very puzzled. What did he mean by less emphasis on academic qualifications? Did he mean that top banking and finance jobs do not need academic qualifications? Or did he mean that our tertiary institutions are not teaching the mastery of professional and technical skills and only the industry could teach the mastery of professional and technical skills? Then what is the point of going to the universities? O and A levels will do, and let the industry train the top managers needed?

Whatever magic that Tharman is going to pull out from his bag, we have 10 years to watch and see if the damage in the last 20 years can be redeemed. Let’s hope in 10 years time we will not be hunting around the world for finance talents and Singaporeans are still blur like sotong in the mastery of professional and technical skills in the industry. 

Today we are a laughing stock as a financial centre that has no finance talents. It would not be funny if after another 10 years we will still be in the same state of nothingness. By the look of it, by the programmes suggested, it is going to be the same.

There must be a detailed plan of affirmative and positive actions and training to ensure that the Singaporean core exists in the banking and finance industry, and not the type of core from issuing pink ICs to foreigners and called them Singaporean core. Someone must be named to be responsible for this important task and be held accountable if nothing happens again. And tell him he will be hanged if he fails.

A financial centre that has no local finance talents and has no programme to ensure that this is being done for the last 20 years!  What, everyone gone to hibernation? This must be another Uniquely Singapore thing. Or someone finds it more expedient to depend on the instant tree formula, so no need to grow our own timber? Hire the best regardless of nationalities, the parrots are heard squawking. Should someone take a shotgun and shoot the silly parrots?

Did anyone say we are always planning ahead? Did anyone notice the big hole in the banking and finance industry?  What kind of brilliant planning is that? And the best part, it’s over, let’s move on. No one is responsible for it.


Virgo 49 said...

Is the Tar Man gonna be second Anwar of Sinkie land??

1st PM goes on leave but appointed a small fry minister to be the deputy PM??

This Tar Man going against the flow and getting impatient for post no 1??

Said MOT non Chinese become PM??

Just because he wears tee shirt with Boss imprint, the Huang siong PM wore his imprinted with Boss Sini which is more powerful.

If he can fixed RN and AY, he can fixed the Tar Man. Maybe also with soto mee.

Anonymous said...

"Whatever magic that Tharman is going to pull out from his bag, we have 10 years to watch and see if the damage in the last 20 years can be redeemed."

Is this a fair and true comment?
If we keep voting Opposition, we will see more and more Singaporeans replacing Aliens?
If we keep voting PAP we will see more and more Aliens turning our PMETs into taxi drivers.
Is this representative of the ground sentiments among Singaporeans?

patriot said...

Never judge any leader by his/her sweet talk.
Only their action and deed count.

If sweet talk is to be believed, than the Conman and Conwoman will be the Most Reliable.


Anonymous said...

Why is there a need for a Singaporean core if there is already a PAP core?
And what is a PAP core?
Does it consists of new and old citizens?

The said...

This is called progress. In the 70s, 80s, and 90s, all the major departments and divisions of banks, local and foreign, are helmed by locals. Even the top posts in Citibank are largely local. So much so that OCBC is known as Old Citi Bankers'Club as many of its top management are locals groomed at Citi.

Fast forward to today - many top bank jobs are taken by foreigners. Direct result of FT policy. Lawrence Wong had the gall to say that if we do not import foreign bankers, some banks may not even set up shop here. Pray, tell me, how many foreign banks have set up hers in the past 10/20 years?

Anonymous said...

Is Lawrence Wong a graduate from a Singapore University?

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

You know a traitor when he opens his mouth. The saving grace is that some of these fools don't even know that they are selling out fellow Singaporeans, including their children and grandchildren. Or maybe they think their children will be super talents and are better than the best talents in the world and can compete on a level playing field.

The sad part is that these fuckheads didn't know that everyone is cheating and nobody is playing fair except them. It is so pathetic.

The daftest idiots on earth deserve to die a painful and torturous death. said...

Daft daft daft.

Who was MOE minister before Ah Suay and Ah Kueh?

Look at the present MOE .......

Has it become better than before botak took over in the 2000s?

The MOE today is the crystal of the future for those hoping botak can do any good in any aspect .........

Daft daft daft


Useless botak. Good for nothing! Only squander people’s blood, sweat, tears whole life time retirement $$$. Where is our CPF? Return our monies at 55! You bastard! said...

Botak is good for nothing. Idiotic botak. Ivory tower dweller. Only know how to squander money. Throw 1 billion here, 2 billions there, everywhere throw here throw there, bastard! OPM mah! Everything at taxpayers' expense. Every single dime they take every month is taxpayers' sweat, blood, teats. They are bastard!

Virgo 49 said...

Bro, Teck Ghee allocated 38 million for upgrading.

LHL how's to lose ejection???

Even with a half man, half woman

Remember TLLM? said...

When Tharman was running the MOE in the 2000s, he articulated many high-sounding and nice SLOGANs.

What happened after that?

Remember his (in)famous SLOGAN: "TLLM"?


What happened on the ground all these years?

The tuition industry got bigger ......

Many students from Pri to JC level kena "horrible teaching staff" who "seems to think every student should have hundreds and thousands of dollars every month to go for private tuition " to learn what the "teaching staff should have taught" during school time ......

What is happening. ......?

Tharman really believes the people are daft and short memory.

Why are so many students suffering if the present and past MOE ministers had done their jobs and discharge their duties in the best of the students' interests?

Why do so many parents have to suffer too and be tormented mentally and financially, forking out thousands every month especially for JC students suffering from far from the best "teaching service rendered"?

If simple primary school, basic secondary school and fundamental JC syllabi are problems to Tharman in getting the teaching staff to impart such knowledge to our young and eager minds at their prime learning years, what has suddenly changed that Tharman is able to get the system to train adult workers to compete in the highly competitive industry?

After more than a decade, the MOE system implemented by Tharman doesn’t seem to work well for countless students and many have to depend on the tuition industry to provide and deliver the "real and proper teaching", what KPI do Tharman have after all these years?

Are they worth the tens if not twentys and thirtys and fortys of millions he pocketed in salaries and bonuses all these years at taxpayers' expense?

Are they running the system our PG leaders built up painstakingly to the ground?

Somebody recently spoke again about Sg not having enough babies ....... omg! Every time they speak, dunno need how many face palms ......? Very jiat lat ?

All like sleeping and dunno why people dun wan have children any more ......

With MOE system so "jiat lat" and parents having to resort to the tuition industry and paying hundreds if not thousands every month, how many young couples dare to "cheong" and quickly get tied down and produce babies by the bus loads?

Anyway, the person who spoke recently has zero of his offsprings and his immediate nephews married and obviously zero baby to contribute. .....

If he can't even get his own to reproduce when they arguably have the millions and even billions to raise their offsprings in this gone crazy and almost unbearable system, what moral rights does he think the people should listen to him and produce more babies?

What is he even thinking when he spoke, assuming he is thinking at all? Where is the logic? How to 服众? If one can preach but cannot do, why should people listen? Tiok Bo?

Leaders and generals rightfully should lead by examples.

And not utter some motherhood speeches drafted by others and ask the men to "cheong" when they themselves "hide inside the bunkers" ......

Other than the non-stop build, build, build like Japan in the past and the China of recent years to add to GDP, really cannot see what abilities they have to grow Singapore going forward?

If that's the best Singapore can offer, likely the future for the generation Y onwards is going to be bleak ......

Anonymous said...

Just because a person is eloquent, can speak well, does not mean that he is clever and can solve serious problems. Such people can only talk and con their way through on superficial matters and for a short time. The truth will surface and the problems they created will soon be exposed for all to see.

Dr Goh was no great speaker. But he thought deeply and his policies were sound and timeless. We are benefiting from his wisdom today. But his policies are being torn to pieces one at a time and you will are now like the proverbial frog being boiled alive over time.

We are being marched to the cliff.