SINGAPORE- A publicity blitz has been launched by a group of bosses in the marine sector to attract Singaporeans to join their industry. They will hold career talks, job fairs and roll out television and radio advertisements in the coming months to spread the word.
About 20 companies have supported the drive by offering more than 1,350 jobs such as administrative officers, engineers and shipping crew members.
Careers@Maritime was launched yesterday at the Republic of Singapore Yacht Club on West Coast Ferry Road.
Mr Farid Khan, regional managing director of Bourbon Asia-Pacific, who mooted the idea, said there is an urgent need to draw Singaporeans to the sector as the Manpower Ministry continues to restrict the hiring of foreign workers.
The marine industry relies heavily on foreign workers from countries such as Indonesia and Malaysia, as few locals are willing to take up the job.
“Not many people understand enough about the work we do,” said Mr Khan. “Our industry is growing, and we offer good salaries of up to US$15,000 (S$19,180) a month for ship captains.”
Mr Farid’s team has also roped in the training arm of Muslim self-help group Mendaki, Social Enterprise Network Singapore (Sense), to help with job matching and suggest training programmes.
The efforts of Mr Farid’s team have won over the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, which has set aside $50,000 for the publicity campaign. It will also subsidise training programmes for the job-seekers.
Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Manpower Hawazi Daipi, who attended yesterday’s launch, hopes that more young people will be drawn to the maritime sector.
“Talks should be held in secondary schools so students can learn about these jobs early on,” he said. “We must also speak to their parents.”
Mr Adbullah Jaffa, owner of Alliance Seaworks, said: “I am happy to employ anyone, from young people to the unemployed. As long as you are willing to work hard, I will train you.”
Recent graduate Camilia Jannah Ismail, 21, took up a job as an administrative and human resource officer in Perdana Marine Offshore.
“My bosses are understanding that this is my first job,” she said. “They are always ready to guide me.”
Mr Muhd Amali Abdul Halim, 25, a training and development officer for Bourbon, said: “I like it that I get to work with colleagues from all over the world. This makes my job interesting.”