Businesses identify manpower and increased costs as core challenges for 2023

  • In the latest national business survey of 931 firms, 74% hope that the Singapore budget 2023 would support them in addressing costs, 57% hope for help in manpower challenges and 48% with assistance in cash flow management.
  • Other areas of support required include help with the transformation and deepening of enterprise capabilities (38%), support in obtaining credit (33%) and helping businesses to internationalise (29%)
  • In terms of top challenges faced by Singapore businesses, these largely related to the increase in overall business costs and manpower.
  • Almost all of the companies indicated that they continue to face manpower issues. These include rising manpower costs, attracting and/or retaining younger workers, new foreign manpower policies raising costs, limited pool of local high-skilled labour, and stricter policies that restrict the supply of foreign workers.
  • Their top cost challenges were wages, logistical costs, overall cost pass-through and procurement costs, and utilities.
  • Despite this, business sentiment has improved for the second consecutive year since the pandemic.

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