In your recent article, 'Jobseekers have high wage expectations' published July 29, 2012, the article stated that, "Current records from the Local Employment and Workforce Development Agency (APTK) show that nine out of 4,663 registered jobseekers are willing to work for a minimum wage of $300, and 340 jobseekers are comfortable with a wage within the $470-$530 range, while 129 others are only willing to work for at least around $550-$650."
Even the highest wage range seems to be very low for an expensive country like Brunei.
Do not forget that we are not talking about a nice comfortable government job, five days a week and with all the fringe benefits. In the private sector, you are often expected to work six days, maybe seven and often 10 to 12 hours a day.
If an employee is working12 hours a day and 27 days a month, that amounts to 324 hours. Even at the highest wage of $650 per month, that is only $2 per hour, or $24 per day.
And do not forget that going to work is not free. It costs money.
Either you may use a bus, that will be a dollar each way, or more likely, you will need a cheap car, which may cost $200 per month to buy plus petrol, insurance and maintenance.
You will need to eat, so you will either buy some cheap takeaway or prepare some food at home to take with you.
What is left out of that $24 per day when your costs have been deducted?
Well let us see, car loan of $200 per month is $7 per day. Food $5 a day. Maintenance, insurance fuel, perhaps another $100 per month or $4 per day or $216 per month.
So your $24 a day is now reduced to $8 per day, less than a dollar an hour.
When you add up all these costs, you have to ask how anyone in Brunei can afford to work for $650 per month, never mind $300.
I would disagree that local jobseekers have high expectations. They do not.
They have very reasonable expectations and they should be recognised and appreciated even more for it.