These disputes are generally resolved either through unions, through the Ministry of Manpower’s labour court, or the civil courts, Manpower minister Lim Swee state said.

The recent Employment Claims Tribunal (ECT) will be established by April 2017 and will grab over from the labour court, which currently adjudicates salary-related claims for workers covered below the Employment Act who earn up to S$4,500 (£2,570) a month.

It will also hear contractual salary-related claims including payment of allowances, bonuses, commissions, salary in lieu of notice and retrenchment benefits, “provided that these are expressed in monetary terms in the contract”, Lim said.

“Public servants, domestic workers and seafarers will persevere to be competent to bring their statutory salary-related claims regarding employment assistance payment and maternity benefits to the ECT, proper as for the labour court,” he said.

However, contractual salary-related claims of these groups of employees will not be heard at the ECT, but through the public service’s internal processes, Lim said.

“Domestic workers can approach their employment agencies and MOM to resolve employment disputes,” he said.

every parties will be required to depart through mediation by MOM-approved mediators infrontof their claims can be heard at the ECT.

“This is because our experience shows that mediation is an effective way of resolving salary-related claims amicably between the parties. More than 90% of labour court claims were resolved at the mediation stage without having to depart through formal hearings,” Lim said.

A Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management will be set up to conduct the pre-ECT mediation and serve as the MOM’s approved mediation centre for every employees, both unionised and non-unionised workers, Lim said.