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Facing job uncertainty and online vitriol, expats in S’pore share their worries and anxieties

SINGAPORE — A Taiwanese expat thought she had left behind a xenophobic environment in Tokyo, where she had worked for close to two years, when she moved to multiracial Singapore five years ago.

But for the past two months, the 36-year-old, who wanted to be known only as Ms Tang, is feeling rather unwelcome in a city-state which has been known for its embrace of global talent, but is now reeling from a Covid-19-induced recession. She tries not to get caught up with the chatter on social media, where various platforms are increasingly filled with anti-foreigner vitriol, such as “foreigners are stealing our jobs”, and epithets such as “foreign trash” being bandied around. But remarks by politicians contesting the July General Election had her wondering if her job as a sales executive at a tech unicorn was secure. She cited Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan, who had said in a live televised debate that the “only reason we have foreigners here is to give that little extra wind in our sails when the opportunities are there”, and now that Singapore is in a storm, it needs to “shed ballast”.

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Originally Posted : https://www.todayonline.com

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