Companies with poor workplace safety and health performance will face harsher penalties

Separately, starting 1 July 2022, new, vaccinated CMP WPHs holding an IPA will no longer be required to undergo the pre-departure preparatory programme (PDPP) if they are entering from Bangladesh, India, or Myanmar.

Effective 14 June 2022 (Tuesday), Singapore's Ministry of Manpower (MOM) will impose higher composition fines for companies in Singapore with poor workplace safety and health performance. On top of that, the Ministry will require companies issued with Stop-Work Orders (SWOs), or with major injuries to engage external auditors for a thorough review - where the companies will need to rectify any unsafe work practices to prevent a recurrence.

This was announced by Senior Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamad during his workplace inspection of a manufacturing company with MOM.

Shared by the Ministry, since April 2022, workplace safety inspectors have completed over 1,400 inspections (an average of over 20 every day), and issued close to 3,300 enforcement actions, including fines and SWOs. This represents a 33% increase in enforcement actions per inspection compared to the same period last year. As such, this announced move is necessary to tackle unsafe workplace practices.

"Companies with poor workplace safety practices will expect to face tougher penalties. We are also moving upstream to require firms with major injury incidences, as well as those with fatal injury incidences, to appoint an independent safety auditor to review their practices comprehensively," Minister Zaqy shared in a Facebook post.

In addition to harsher punishments, the Ministry is targeting to implement the Approved Code of Practice (ACOP) for Company Director’s Workplace Safety and Health Duties later this year. "This means that the courts can take into account whether companies heeded the ACOP in deciding judgements and penalties," as explained in an MOM statement.

Minister Zaqy reiterated that workplace safety is Singapore's collective responsibility; it is important stakeholders work together to protect the lives and health of the nation's workers.

Separately, MOM has informed that, starting 1 July 2022 (Friday), new, vaccinated construction, marine shipyard & process (CMPs) work permit holders (WPHs) holding an in-principle approval (IPA) will no longer be required to undergo a two-day pre-departure preparatory programme (PDPP) if they are entering from countries where the PDPP is available - and they are Bangladesh, India, and Myanmar.

That said, existing PDPP providers will have to put in place business continuity plans (BCP) for the PDPP regime in the event that the PDPP is reinstated (i.e. public health risks due to the emergence of new variants of concern). This is to, according to the Ministry, maintain resiliency for the CMP sectors.

With regard to non-Malaysian WPHs from the CMP sectors holding an IPA, all non-Malaysian WPHs will still be required to undergo the residential onboarding programme at the MOM’s Onboard Centres upon their arrival in Singapore. "Employers whose WPHs are required to undergo the Onboard programme must ensure that they have booked a slot at the Onboard Centre through the Onboard Booking System before their arrival in Singapore," it was explained in MOM's statement.

The following table summarises the entry requirements:

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Images / MOM

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