Congratulations go to Singapore for being the first nation to do something in this economic crisis that actually makes some sense: Singapore Cuts Government Salaries as Slump Deepens.

Singapore’s government said it will cut the salaries of its top public workers and ministers as a “sharp” recession threatens to increase job losses and hurt lending this year.

The top government salaries will fall 12 percent to 20 percent in 2009 and “may be subject to further adjustments given the volatility of the economy,” Teo Chee Hean, the defense minister who’s also in charge of the civil service, said in parliament today. The reductions are deeper than the pay cuts the government said it was planning in November.

Singapore is scheduled to unveil more measures this week to help companies cope with the deepening global slump, which caused exports to contract in 2008 by the most in seven years. The National Wages Council last week advised employers to freeze or cut pay rather than fire workers.

Little can be done to mitigate the current slowdown, which has spread to all parts of the economy, Trade Minister Lim Hng Kiang said in parliament today. The nation is facing unprecedented conditions in this “sharp” recession, he said.

Ding, Ding, Ding not only do we have a winning action by Singapore, we have a winning policy statement as well “Little can be done to mitigate the current slowdown“.

Now if only Congress, the Fed, and the administration would wake up, we would all be better off. Don’t count on it anytime soon.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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