Consequences for and enforcement against employers who have not made declaration for electronic salary payment for migrant workers

Parliamentary Question, 5 June 2020

Ms Anthea Ong asked the Minister for Manpower (a) what percentage of employers have not made a declaration by 15 April 2020 that they will pay salaries electronically by the next salary payment due date; (b) what are the reasons cited for not doing so; © what are the consequences for this non-declaration given that electronic salary payment is now a legal requirement; and (d) how will the Ministry enforce this new law.

Mrs Josephine Teo: The vast majority of employers are now paying salaries electronically. In the initial month of implementation, a very small number of employers were unable to do so, due to technical or administrative issues. For example, their workers’ bank account applications were still pending approval by the bank. In these cases, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) allowed the employers to continue to pay outstanding salaries in cash.

Due to its urgent necessity, this new requirement was introduced at very short notice. Nevertheless, the vast majority of employers have complied. MOM will continue to follow up and remind the remaining employers to make the switch if they have not already done so, especially now that circuit breaker measures have been lifted. MOM will in due course take enforcement action against non-compliance, as it would for other conditions under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Anthea Ong is a Nominated Member of Parliament. (A Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP) is a Member of the Parliament of Singapore who is appointed by the President. They are not affiliated to any political party and do not represent any constituency. There are currently nine NMPs in Parliament.)

The multi-sector perspective that comes from her ground immersion of 12 years in different capacities helps her translate single-sector issues and ideas across boundaries without alienating any particular community/group. As an entrepreneur and with many years in business leadership, it is innate in her to discuss social issues with the intent of finding solutions, or at least of exploring possibilities. She champions mental health, diversity and inclusion — and climate change in Parliament.

She is also an impact entrepreneur/investor and a passionate mental health advocate, especially in workplace wellbeing. She started WorkWell Leaders Workgroup in May 2018 to bring together top leaders (CXOs, Heads of HR/CSR/D&I) of top employers in Singapore (both public and private) to share, discuss and co-create inclusive practices to promote workplace wellbeing. Anthea is also the founder of Hush TeaBar, Singapore’s 1st silent teabar and a social movement that aims to bring silence, self care and social inclusion into every workplace, every community — with a cup of tea. The Hush Experience is completely led by lovingly-trained Deaf facilitators, supported by a team of Persons with Mental Health Issues (PMHIs).

Follow Anthea Ong on her public page at

A full-time human, and part-time everything else.