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Monday, April 16, 2007

How Much is a Minister Worth?

That seems to be on the minds of many Singaporeans as their ministers' pays have taken a quantum leap to probably become the most highly paid ministers in the world.

How should we evaluate a minister's pay?

Let us make some interesting comparisons:

In the UK a professional accountant with four years working experience can draw 40,000 pounds per annum whereas a professional footballer can earn more than 100,000 pounds per week.

Some will say that it is a crazy world that someone like Ronaldo of MU who is only 22 gets that kind of money just to play around with the ball.

But let us look at the pay the Singapore ministers are getting.
They peg the pay to two-thirds salary of the top professions in the private sector.

The rationale is transparent in terms of the monetary considerations but giving a high pay is no guarantee that the person is going to perform well as a minister.
But Singapore has built a strong reputation for acting against corrupt officials and so paying ministers a good salary is important to enable them to carry out their duties without fear or favour.

Since GDP is used as a measure of the value of the pay, perhaps it would be appropriate to use a variable salary scheme.

A less dramatic pay scheme for Malaysia would be:

Based on the average salary of the leaders of the twenty top most democratic countries of the world, Singapore excluded.

I think that would be a good deal if it can help reduce corruption in Malaysia. Plus all ministers will declare all their assets to Parliament.

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