Listening to LKY’s final interviews (2013 ?), I have to agree that Singapore — counting citizens+PRs — doesn’t have enough technical talent across many technical domains, including software dev. https://www.gov.sg/article/why-do-we-need-skilled-foreign-workers-in-singapore is a 2020 publication, citing software dev as a prime example.
A telltale sign of the heavy reliance on foreign talent — If an employer favors a foreigner, it faces penalty primarily (Russell warning) in the form of ban on EP application/renewal. This penalty spotlights the reliance on EPs at multinationals like MLP, Goog, FB, Macq.
The relatively high-end dev jobs might be 90% occupied by foreigners, not citizens like me. I can recall my experience in OC, Qz, Macq, INDEED.com interview… Why? One of the top 2 most obvious reasons is the highly selective interview. High-end tech jobs always feature highly selective tech interviews — I call it “Expertise screening”.
Expertise is unrelated to LocalSys knowledge. LocalSys is crucial in GTD competence.
As I explained to Ashish and Deepak CM, many GTD-competent  developers in SG (or elsewhere) are not theoretical enough, or lack the intellectual curiosity , to pass these interviews. In contrast, I do have some Expertise. I have proven it in so many interviews, more than most candidates.
(On a side note, even though I stand out among local candidates, the fact remains that I need a longer time to find a job in SG than Wall St. )
 As my friend Qihao explained, most rejected candidates (including Ashish) probably have the competence to do the job, but that’s not his hiring criteria. That criteria is too low. Looks like SG has some GTD-competent developers but not enough with expertise or curiosity.
— Math exams in SG and China
Looking at my son’s PSLE math questions, I was somehow reminded that the real challenge in high-end tech IV is theoretical/analytical skills — “problem-solving” skill as high-end hiring teams say, but highly theoretical in nature. This kind of analytical skill including vision and pattern recognition is similar to my son’s P5 math questions.
In high-end tech IV, whiteboard algo and QQ are the two highly theoretical domains. ECT and BP are less theoretical.
What’s in common? All of these skills can be honed (磨练). Your
percentile measures your abilities + effort (motivation, curiosity). I’m relatively strong in both abilities and effort.
So I know the math questions are similar in style in SG and China. I have reason to believe East-European and former-Soviet countries are similar. I think other countries are also similar.