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41,000 Food Services Workers to Benefit from New Food Services Progressive Wage Model Recommendations

The Government accepts the Tripartite Cluster for Food Services (TCF)’s recommendations on their new Progressive Wage Model (PWM), released on 15 February 2023 (refer to The recommendations set a three-year schedule of sustained PWM wage increases from 2023 to 2025, outline a clear career progression pathway for food services workers, and stipulate the training requirements for food services job roles. The changes will take effect from 1 March 2023, with a transitional period of six months for employers to understand and comply with the requirements. MOM will then enforce the PWM requirements after the transitional period ends.


2          The TCF’s recommendations will cover about 41,000 resident full-time and part-time food services workers, such as kitchen assistants, waiters and cooks, with those at the entry level seeing their monthly wages move up by 19% over the three-year period. These moves will complement the Food Services Industry Transformation Map 20251 in developing an innovative, vibrant Food Services sector.


Three-Year Schedule of Sustained Wage Increases


3          The TCF has recommended a three-year schedule of sustained PWM wage increases, including additional PWM wage requirements for overtime hours worked in a month.


4          From 1 March 2023, about 12,000 full-time food services workers will see their wages rise to at least the entry-level PWM wage level of $1,750. This baseline wage will increase from $1,750 in 2023 to $2,080 in 2025, an increase of 19% over the three-year period.


Career Progression Pathway for Food Services Sector


5          The TCF has proposed a career ladder for the Food Services sector with differentiated tracks for two categories of food establishments: first, Quick-Service establishments (e.g. fast food outlets, food kiosks, food courts), and second, Full-Service establishments (e.g. restaurants with wait staff), caterers and central kitchens. Job roles included in the career ladder will be covered by mandatory PWM wage requirements, except for job roles in the highest rung where wages will be determined by market forces. The career ladder will provide workers with a clear progression pathway to higher wages, better skills, and increased job responsibilities.


Raising Productivity through Mandatory WSQ Training Requirements


6          Alongside the wage increases, the TCF has recommended that each food services worker complete a minimum of two Workforce Skills Qualifications (WSQ) training modules relevant to their job role. The training will help food services workers perform better at their jobs and contribute to their firm’s productivity. Employers will have one year from the implementation date of 1 March 2023 (i.e. up to end-February 2024) to ensure that their workers meet the training requirements. 


Phased Implementation of Food Services PWM and Occupational Progressive Wages from 1 March 2023


7          For the first six months from March to August 2023, MOM will give employers time to adjust and comply with the wage requirements. Tripartite partnerswill also be educating employers on the various Progressive Wage requirements. After this transitional period, employers who do not comply with the wage requirements may have their work pass privileges suspended.


8          In addition to the Food Services PWM, the Occupational Progressive Wage (OPW) for Administrators and Drivers will also take effect from 1 March 2023, benefitting about 195,000 full-time and part-time resident administrators and drivers.2 The implementation of the Food Services PWM and OPW, together with the recently launched Progressive Wage Mark, builds upon the momentum of Progressive Wage moves. Up to 94% of lower-wage workers will be covered by Progressive Wages in 2023. This is a significant milestone in our continuing efforts to uplift our lower-wage workers and strengthen our social compact.



  1. The Food Services Industry Transformation Map 2025 was launched in May 2022 by the Ministry of Trade and Industry. For more information, refer to
  2. For more information on the OPW requirements, please refer to