NEA to hold industry consultations on changes to mandatory licensing scheme for cleaning businesses

Faced with a labour crunch, the cleaning industry needs to shift to a "manpower-lean" model and workers must be "skilled and productive"

SINGAPORE - The National Environment Agency (NEA) will be holding industry consultations on changes to the licensing of cleaning businesses, it said on Wednesday (Sept 28).

Faced with a labour crunch, the cleaning industry needs to shift to a "manpower-lean" model and workers must be "skilled and productive", NEA said in a joint statement with the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and the Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA).

The agency's target is "a more sustainable and professional sector".

In 2014, the cleaning industry saw the introduction of a mandatory licensing regime that requires training for cleaners.

Under the licensing scheme, general cleaning businesses also have to adopt a progressive wage plan for citizen and permanent resident cleaners, specifying minimum wages for workers at different stages of their career.

NEA has been working with agencies and organisations such as MOM, WDA and the National Trades Union Congress since 2010 to improve the cleaning industry.

It hopes to reach over 100 cleaning businesses and their clients for feedback as it makes revisions to the existing licensing programme.

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