, Singapore

Singapore to sustain 4% pay hike in 2019: study

It lags behind other Asian counterparts which are geared for 0.1 to 0.5% salary hike increases.

Salary in Singapore is poised to continue its 4% hike in 2019 across all industries, a study by Willis Towers Watson revealed. With this, the Lion City lagged behind other Asian counterparts that are expected to see salary increases further upward.

Based on the study, employers in Singapore plan to increase their salary budgets by 4% on average which is the same increase they have reported for 2018.

Along with Singapore, employers from Australia, Hong Kong, India, New Zealand, Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam reported that their salary budget increases remain unchanged from the 2018 figures.

Across the 17 Asian countries included in the study, Pakistan employers were seen to have the biggest budget increase for salary by 0.6ppt to 9.6%. Meanwhile, other employers from countries such as China, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Macau, and Thailand reported salary budget increases from around 0.1% to 0.5%.

Salary increases for 2019 averaged 5.7% across 17 markets which is up 0.1ppt from the 2017 average salary increases of 5.6%.

According to the firm’s findings, the strong growth of pharmaceutical and health sciences industry in the region is helping to keep the sector’s salary increases ahead in most markets.

“The sector is bolstered by biotech developments and other digital innovations, as well as recent policy reforms in China and Japan,” the report noted.

The sector saw a median salary increase that is 0.2% higher than the general industry in 2018, with the larger differences seen in Indonesia (0.9%), China (0.5%) and India (0.3%).

Meanwhile, the financial services face headwinds, making its salary increases still lag behind in the most of the markets in the region.

“The sector has been facing headwinds in a continuously evolving business landscape, particularly due to intensifying competition from fintech developments, thereby making firms in this sector to be even more cautious with their overall spending,” the study explained.

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