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MOM announcements in 2019 Budget Statement

This year’s Budget Statement was delivered by Minister for Finance, Mr Heng Swee Keat, in Parliament on Monday, 18 February 2019.

Budget 2019

You can find the full 2019 Budget Statement at https://sg.sg/budget2019.

Enhancements to Workfare Income Supplement (WIS) scheme

WIS provides cash supplements and CPF top-ups to workers whose earnings are in the bottom 20%, with some support for those slightly above.

From January 2020:

  • The qualifying income cap will be raised from the current $2,000 per month to $2,300 per month.
  • The maximum annual payouts will be increased by up to $400.

You can find out more at:

Extension of Special Employment Credit (SEC) and Additional SEC (ASEC)

The SEC was introduced in 2011 to support employers in hiring older Singaporeans, and the ASEC in 2015 to encourage employers to hire workers above the re-employment age. In 2017, the SEC and ASEC were extended until end-2019 to provide wage offsets to employers hiring Singaporean workers aged 55 and above, and earning up to $4,000.

As announced at Budget 2019, the SEC and ASEC will be extended for one more year, until end-2020.

You can find out more at the SEC website.

Launch of New Professional Conversion Programmes (PCP)

Since the establishment of the Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) in 2007, over 100 PCPs have been launched in about 30 sectors. In 2019, new PCPs relating to Blockchain, Embedded Software, and Prefabrication, will be launched to help Singaporeans move into new growth areas.

Workforce Singapore will share more details on the new PCPs later this year.

You can find out more at the WSG website.

Extension of Career Support Programme

The Career Support Programme, which is part of Adapt and Grow initiative, provides salary support to encourage employers to hire mature and retrenched, or long-term unemployed Singapore Citizens for PMET jobs.

The CSP was introduced in 2015, and will be extended for two more years till March 2021. The support parameters remain unchanged.

You can find out more in the FAQs on Career Support Programme.

Changes to Dependency Ratio Ceiling (DRC), or Foreign Worker Quotas

To manage the foreign workers growth in the services sector, sustain the impetus for restructuring and support good employment outcomes, MOM will:

  • Reduce the Services sector DRC in two steps, from 40% to 38% from 1 January 2020, and then to 35% from 1 January 2021.
  • Reduce the Services sector S Pass Sub-DRC in two steps, from 15% to 13% from 1 January 2020, and then to 10% from 1 January 2021.

To ease the transition, these changes are announced nearly a year in advance, and will be implemented in two steps.

We encourage firms that are prepared to undertake transformation projects to grow sustainably within the new DRCs, to come forward early and tap on the Lean Enterprise Development (LED) Scheme. The LED Scheme provides grant support, as well as transitional manpower flexibilities if firms need more time to complete the transformation.

There are no changes to the DRCs and S Pass sub-DRCs for the other sectors – Construction, Manufacturing, Marine Shipyard and Process.

No changes to Foreign Worker Levy Rates

There will be no changes to foreign worker levy rates, across pass types, sectors and tiers. The earlier-announced foreign worker levy increases for the Marine Shipyard and Process sectors will be deferred for another year.

You can find out more at the Budget Annex on Foreign Worker Policy Changes.

No changes to policy on Employment Pass

There are no changes to the policy on Employment Pass for all sectors (including Services sector).