In Singapore, duck when Shit hits the fan

PMETs in five industries most affected by disruptive technology. These industries currently employ almost a million workers in Singapore. New trillion-dollar industries will come out of nowhere and wipe out existing trillion-dollar industries. This is the future we’re headed into, for better or for worse.

Robotics and 3-D printing have made it cheaper to manufacture in the United States and Europe than in China. Robots such as Baxter, from Rethink Robotics, and UR10, from Universal Robots, have arms; screens which show you their emotions; and sensors that detect what is happening around them. The cost of operating these is less than the cost of human labor. We can now have robots working 24×7 and doing some of the work of humans. Over time, these robots will become ever more sophisticated and do most human jobs. The manufacturing industry is surely going to be disrupted in a very big way. This is good news for America, Europe, and parts of Asia, because it will become a local industry. But this will be bad for the Chinese economy — which is largely dependent on manufacturing jobs.

In the next decade, robots will likely go on strike, because we won’t need them anymore. They will be replaced by 3D printers. Within 15 to 20 years, we will even be able to 3D print electronics. Imagine being able to design your own iPhone and print it at home. This is what will become possible.



Bitcoin? Many technology and retail companies are supporting it. Crowdfunding is shaking up the venture-capital industry and making it less relevant because it provides start-ups with an alternative for raising seed capital. We will soon be able to crowdfund loans for houses, cars, and other goods. With cardless transactions for purchasing goods, we won’t need the types of physical banks and financial institutions that we presently have. Banks in the United States seem to be complacent because they have laws protecting them from the competition. But our laws don’t apply in other countries. We will see innovations happening abroad which disrupt industries in the United States.
Apple recently announced Healthkit, its platform for health information. It wants to store data from the wearable sensors that will soon be monitoring our blood pressure, blood oxygenation, heart rhythms, temperature, activity levels, and other symptoms. Google, Microsoft, and Samsung will surely not be left behind and will all compete to provide the best health-data platforms. With these data, they will be able to warn us when we are about to get sick. AI-based physicians will advise us on what we need to do to get healthy. Medical-test data, especially in fields such as oncology, is often so complex that human doctors cannot understand it. This will become even more difficult when they have genomics data to correlate. Over the last 15 years, the cost of human genome sequencing has dropped from the billions to about a thousand dollars. At the rate at which prices are dropping, the cost of sequencing will be close to zero in a few years and we will all have our genomes sequenced. When you combine these data with the medical-sensor data that the tech companies are collecting on their cloud platforms, we will have a medical revolution. We won’t need doctors for day-to-day medical advice anymore. Robotic surgeons will also do the most sophisticated surgeries. We’re going to disrupt the entire health-care system.



Solar prices have dropped about 97 percent over the past 35 years, and, at the rate at which solar is advancing, by the end of this decade we will achieve grid parity across the United States. Grid parity means it’s cheaper to produce energy at home on your solar cells than to buy it from utilities. Move forward another 10 or 20 years, and it will costs a fraction as much to produce your own energy as to buy it from the grid. This means that the utility companies will be in serious trouble. This is why they are beginning to fight the introduction of solar. If solar keeps advancing in the way it is, it will eclipse the fossil-fuel industry. Solar is only one of maybe a hundred advancing technologies that could disrupt the energy industry. When we have unlimited energy, we can have unlimited clean water, because we can simply boil as much ocean water as we want. We can afford to grow food locally in vertical farms. This can be 100 percent organic because we won’t need insecticides in the sealed farm buildings. Imagine also being able to 3D print meat and not having to slaughter animals. This will transform and disrupt agriculture and the entire food-production industry.

Remember when landline businesses disappear and were replaced by mobile? Mobile is now being replaced by data. When I travel abroad, I don’t make long-distance calls anymore, because I just call over Skype. Soon we will have WiFi everywhere. In practically every industry, the leaders in their industries will likely not even exist because they are not aware of the changes that are coming or reluctant to invest to reinvent.


Lucky Singaporeans. Five ministers will spearhead efforts Singaporeans to help workers adapt to the sweeping changes coming their way. They have started working with Monetary Authority of Singapore, Economic Development Board, Infocomm Media Development Authority, Health Ministry and International Enterprise Singapore, to systematically identify job openings and the skill requirements. Second Minister for Manpower Josephine Teo will lead the effort. The growth sectors, which will be overseen by four senior ministers of state, are

  • healthcare (headed by Dr. Amy Khor);
  • Infocomm and media (Dr Janil Puthucheary);
  • wholesale trade (Dr. Koh Poh Koon);
  • professional services
  • financial services are overseen by Ms. Indranee Rajah.

Singapore job market shrinks significantly in 4Q2017

2017 was a strong employment year for the Asia Pacific region, especially in the financial services sector.

Singapore saw a significant drop in both jobs and job seekers this current Q4, according to Morgan McKinley’s APAC Employment Monitor for 4Q17.
As compared to a strong performance in Q3, jobs were down by 20%, while professionals seeking new jobs were down 37% q-o-q. Despite closing the year with a low performance, the financial services market in Singapore was stronger in 2017 than 2016. In 2016, hiring in the fintech sector strengthened and hiring in traditional financial services roles reduced. But 2017 saw the opposite. Specifically hiring in trading, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions and private banking was high. Although shrinking because of the government’s restrictive visa policies, Singapore continues to have a disproportionately large expat workforce.  Meanwhile, contractor hiring globally has increased by 22% y-o-y, but positions slid downward along with the standard seasonal trajectory q-o-q. By nature, contractor work is more responsive to seasonal and economic shifts, so the fluctuation matches our expectations.  Regional data has shown that contractor figures provide an overview that is informed by the vastly different business climates of the individual countries. For example, contractor positions in Sydney are highly regarded and well integrated into business models, whereas in Singapore contractor positions are seen as inferior to full-time positions. According to findings from the APAC Employment Monitor, many companies are moving portions of their business out of Singapore, which may cause a cultural shift to take place. Contractors play a large role in managing those transitions. Contractors save businesses a lot of money while providing workers with a rapid professional growth path, so their popularity will continue to increase and normalise in countries that have thus far been slower to embrace them.


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