Monday, October 5, 2009

10 reasons why we had no problem integrating with the Malaysians

With Singapore's population grown to almost 5 million but with a quarter of that total been contributed by foreign workers, no wonder the government is spending 10 million on the big 'I' - Integration.

But why is there such a big gap between the locals and new immigrants? Singapore is definitely not new to foreigners coming into the country to join the workforce. With Singapore being the region headquarters for a large number of MNCs, from banks to electronic firms, expats have been coming into Singapore and some even settled down as Singapore citizens. Since the industralisation of Jurong, Malaysians have also been crossing the causeway to fill up job positions here.

If we had no problem integrating with the expats and Malaysians, then why are we having so much issues with the new immigrants now? Perhaps before dumping the 10 million dollars, the government could take a look at what worked with the Malaysians and learn from it?

Let us take a look at 10 reasons why we had no problem integrating with the Malaysians:
  • They think "I'm grateful to be working here". Not "You should be grateful that I'm working here".

  • They think "My country is big, but it's better here". Not "My country is bigger and better".

  • They take the effort to mingle with other Singaporeans. Not just with that little circle of their own countrymen.

  • When they do get Singapore citizenship, they genuinely settle down for good. Not keeping an eye on US or Europe while taking Singapore as a stepping stone.

  • They take buses and MRT trains like the rest of us. Not cycle dangerously on the roads and pavements as if they are still in their country.

  • They speak only as loud as us. Not loud enough to be heard a few blocks away.

  • They have the same hygiene standard as us. They know that toilet bowls are to be sat on, not squatted on.

  • We will not think of them when the word "back-stab" pops up.

  • They do not become newspapers headlines when a group of them receive citizenship.

  • They don't come into Singapore to be hookers.



  1. I think the heart of it all is, integration.

  2. And the success of Integration is related to Attitude.

  3. Actually for malaysian chinese, i think it is more due to the fact the malaysian government is bias towards the malay population than anything else. I dont have any malaysian malay friends so i cant comment on them.

  4. Integration and a willingness to adapt to your host country is the fundamental requirement for any migrant.

    If I move to the United States, I certainly will not demand that Americans bend over and speak to me in Singlish.

  5. And it makes things worse when all you hear from the government is about how good they are and how important they are to the country, while seeing that is not the case with those you encounter.