This will delay the impact of the upcoming GST increase on Singaporean households for at least five years, and at least 10 years for lower-income households, Finance Minister Lawrence Wong shared.
Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Lawrence Wong announced a S$1.4bn top-up on the Assurance Package, in a Parliamentary session on Monday (7 November 2022), in line with the upcoming Goods and Services Tax (GST) increase from 1 January 2023.
In his speech, DPM Wong said: "This ensures that the package continues to offset additional GST expenses for the majority of Singaporean households for at least five years, with around 10 years [of] offset for lower-income households."
With this top-up, the Assurance Package will amount to about S$8bn. More details on this enhancement will be announced in Budget 2023.
The Assurance Package was first announced in Singapore's Budget 2020, with an initial allocation of S$6bn, as part of the GSTV Fund. Following this, the Government added S$640mn to the Package as part of Budget 2022, to provide increased support for locals to manage the GST increase.
In detail, the package aims to allow:
- Every adult Singaporean to receive cash payouts totalling S$700 to S$1,600.
- Eligible seniors to receive a special GSTV – Cash (Seniors’ Bonus) totalling S$600 to S$900.
- Eligible HDB households to receive additional U-Save rebates totalling S$330 to S$570, depending on the flat type.
- All Singaporean children and seniors to receive MediSave top-ups totalling S$450.
- All Singaporean households to receive two tranches of CDC vouchers worth S$200 each in 2023, and 2024 which can be used at all participating heartland merchants and hawkers, as well as major supermarkets.
In October this year, the Government next announced a S$1.5bn support package to provide further cost of living relief for households, with increased support for lower- to middle-income groups, building on the support measures announced in Budget 2022, April 2022, and June 2022. According to DPM Wong, the support package, together with earlier rounds of support measures rolled out this year, will fully cover the increase in the cost of living for lower-income households on average, and more than half of the increase in the cost of living for middle-income households on average this year.
- The Cost of Living Special Payment comprising up to S$500 cash for 2.5mn eligible adult Singaporeans, to be disbursed in December 2022. Eligible individuals should have an assessable income for the year of assessment 2022 of S$100,000 and below, and should not own more than one property.
- Additional S$100 CDC Vouchers for every Singaporean household in January 2023, which will be allocated equally for spending at both heartland shops and participating supermarkets.
More details on the S$1.5bn support package can be found in an earlier coverage by HRO here.
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