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Gig workers will be the focus of a newly established committee in Singapore, which will look into ways to provide them with more security in the areas of retirement and housing adequacy, work injury financial protection, and negotiating power.

According to Senior Minister of State for Manpower Koh Poh Koon, the advisory group intends to complete its work by the second half of 2022, with the ultimate objective of submitting suggestions that may need legislative reform.

In the case of tripartite guidelines, for example, they may be used to advise either employees or platform operators on what is expected of them. It is possible that some things may require legislative modifications in order to be implemented; some of the measures will need to be protected and guarded by legislation in order to provide sufficient legal protection,” he said, according to reports.

Or it may be something we delegate to the union, such as the ability to negotiate with platform operators on a flexible basis, since the circumstances can change and platform business models can change as well, and we don’t want everything to be one-size-fits-all.

Deliveries, private-hire vehicle drivers, and taxi drivers are the three types of gig workers on whom the committee is concentrating its efforts. There are members from the private and public sectors as well as academic institutions and government agencies on the committee, which is led by Goh Swee Chen, president of the Institute for Human Resource Professionals.