Skip to content

Kusu News 20-Sept-2021

Fear of Covid-19 and youths’ changing priorities leave factory owners in a pinch, as demographic challenges mount

25-Aug-2021 WSJ

Labor shortages are materializing across China as young people shun factory jobs and more migrant workers stay home, offering a possible preview of larger challenges ahead as the workforce ages and shrinks.

With global demand for Chinese goods surging this year, factory owners say they are struggling to fill jobs that make everything from handbags to cosmetics.

Some migrant workers are worried about catching Covid-19 in cities or factories, despite China’s low caseload. Other young people are gravitating toward service-industry jobs that pay more or are less demanding.

The trends echo similar labor-market mismatches in the U.S., where some employers are finding it hard to hire enough workers, even though millions of people who lost jobs during the pandemic remain unemployed.

But China’s problems also reflect longer-term demographic shifts—including a shrinking labor pool—that are legacies of the country’s decadeslong one-child policy, which was formally abandoned in 2016.

Those trends pose a serious threat to China’s potential long-term growth rate. They will also make it harder for China to keep supplying the world with cheap manufactured goods, potentially adding to global inflationary pressures.

Read more

With Covid-19 under control, Singapore must now refocus on the future: PM Lee

In 'the crisis of a generation', he says Singaporeans have shown themselves and the world what they can do

30-Aug-2021 The Business Times

WHILE this year's National Day Rally was shorn of bumper packages, it was nonetheless a blueprint for the future, with announcements that reflect what Singapore aspires to be - a society that values lower-wage workers, remains open to foreigners, and prizes racial and religious harmony.

Even hard policy measures were tied to principles. For instance, firms that hire foreign workers will have to pay a minimum salary to local employees - with the cost to be borne not just by firms, but consumers too, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Sunday.

Meanwhile, two new laws will give greater legal and symbolic force to Singapore's commitment to fair employment and racial harmony.

Read More

Hundreds of politicians quit in protest of new HK loyalty oath, refuse allegiance to Chinese regime

13-Sep-2021 Intellasia | Firstpost | 

Dozens of local community politicians in Hong Kong swore a newly required loyalty oath to China on Friday after hundreds of their colleagues quit in protest as authorities try to purge the city of “unpatriotic” elements.

District councils are the only political office in Hong Kong where all seats are directly elected by residents.

They deal with bread and butter local issues like bus routes, trash collection and playgrounds. But they have also become a symbol of residents’ urge for a greater say in how their city is run.

In late 2019, towards the end of months of huge democracy protests, opposition candidates critical of China’s rule won a landslide, hammering pro-government candidates.

China has since responded with a crackdown on dissent as well as an overhaul of the city’s political system that reduces the number of directly elected officials and vets politicians for their perceived patriotism.

Read More 

Taiwanese President reiterates her commitment to defend country’s sovereignty amid fears from China

13-Sep-2021 Intellasia | ANI | 

Taiwanese President Tsai-Ing-Wen has reiterated her commitment to defend the country’s sovereignty amid rising fears from China, local media reported.

Tsai on Friday said that the government is leaving no stone unturned in bolstering Taiwan’s self-defence and it’s evidenced by last month’s establishment of a mobility squadron aimed at strengthening the country’s asymmetrical warfare capabilities as well as the Han Kuang military exercise planned for next week, Taiwan Today reported on Saturday.

She inspected a production centre of the country’s Armaments Bureau, Air Force Air Defence and Missile Command and Navy Fleet Command in central Taiwan’s Taichung City on Friday.

Tsai also said that it’s her responsibility to provide members of the military with the latest equipment and dignified accommodation befitting their crucial duties to society.

She stressed that great progress is being made in this regard through the regular refurbishment of dormitories and the development of the national defence industry, Taiwan Today reported.

Read More 

Singapore likely to add more countries for quarantine-free entry in coming weeks, months

20-Sept-2021 The Business Times

Vaccinated travellers from more countries are likely able to enter Singapore without having to quarantine "in the coming weeks and months".

This comes after a successful start to the Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL), with only one Covid-19 case detected among some 900 travellers who have come in under the scheme.

Transport Minister S. Iswaran said on Monday that the Republic is actively working to expand the VTL. The scheme started on Sept 8, and is open to Brunei and Germany for a start.

Read More