The Solidarity Budget announced by the DPM on 6 April, will support workers during this tough period of the novel coronavirus pandemic, and help firms retain their employees.
The second stimulus package was announced on March 26. The stimulus plan, named as the Resilience Budget, is estimated to be worth S$48 billion (US$33.7 billion) drawing on national reserves for the first time since the global financial crisis in 2009.
According to Keat, the additional spending will widen the budget deficit to 7.9 percent of GDP, markedly higher than the previous target of 2.1 percent.
Jobs Support Scheme (JSS)
The Solidarity budget announced on 6 April, Monday, primarily includes the further enhancements to the Jobs Support Scheme that will help millions of people save their jobs.
The JSS encourages firms to retain the local workers during this period of uncertainty. It also assures that the Government will co-fund wages of workers for nine months in three payments. Additionally, other sectors like aviation and tourism, food services will receive 75% and 50% wage support each.
For the Self-Employed Persons (SEPs)
- More SEPs to qualify for SEP Income Relief Scheme (SIRS)
- To include all who also earn a small income from employment work
- Raise the Annual Value threshold from up to $13,000 to up to $21,000
- A total of about 100,000 SEPs will receive three quarterly cash payouts of $3000 each, starting from May 2020
Support for households
The government has announced nine months plan to provide enhanced support for households from the month of April to December.
For the month of April, a temporary relief fund is also provided along with the U-Save and U-Save special payment GST voucher. COVID-19 support grant is enlisted for the month of May for the household support.
Furthermore, the Ministry of Power (MOM) has issued advice to businesses on alternatives to retrenchment to help keep their business viable so that fewer jobs are lost.