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Mon, May 27, 2002 - Page 21 News List

Some are willing to strip

STAFF WRITER

Singaporeans desperately seeking jobs while their affluent southeast Asian economy is going through its worst downturn are willing to bare all for cash, the Sunday Times reported. Most of them are approaching talent agencies and asking for as much as S$50,000 Singapore (US$27,777) for the "full monty," the report said. "They walk straight into the office, and say they're jobless, and broke," said Eddie Goh, director of talent agency New Experience. "The guy would say `I can act in blue films' and the girls would say they didn't mind wearing a bikini or going topless," he said. Goh said at least one in 10 would turn up for the agency's daily auditions offering to disrobe even though the company was not producing adult materials. Liddy Chong, a partner at another agency Mediapegs, said 20 percent of the 800 people on her firm's talent list were either unemployed or retrenched. Singapore is in the throes of its worst recession in more than 30 years although recent data suggest a recovery is underway. The nemployment rate hit a 15-year high of 4.7 percent in December.

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