The Singapore gig economy: Right balance on regulations needed to unlock its full potential, say experts

Article Summary

Who are the Labour In Gig Economy?
“those who perform these task-based labour are called ‘own-account workers’, or “self-employed persons who are engaged in a trade or business without employing any paid workers”, according to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM)…..Informally, they are called gig workers, or independent contractors”

How large is the Gig Economy in SG?
“The ministry’s Labour Force in 2018 report said that there were 210,800 residents who were own account workers, or 9.3 per cent of all employed residents.”

What’s the benefits of the existence of Gig Economy?
“Among consumers, the gig economy has brought about lower prices and greater variety of products, said Professor Sumit Agarwal from NUS Business School…By offering alternative products and services to consumers, gig economy companies have added to the competition in the industries they operate in, he said. “

“Economic growth will also speed up if Singapore cultivates a blended workforce – a greater number of freelancers and fewer full-time, permanent employees compared to the current proportion – as firms can adjust more quickly to disruption”

What are the short comings of Gig Economy?
“Countries and cities are still figuring out how best to protect gig economy workers… rules on minimum rights for gig workers, including the need to provide free training and keeping workers informed about their working condition…there is still room for more protection of freelancers”

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