Written Answer by Minister of Manpower Mrs Josephine Teo to PQ on Singaporeans who earn below $1,300 per month
NOTICE PAPER NO. 187 OF 2020 FOR THE SITTING ON 5 JANUARY 2021
QUESTION NO. 300 FOR WRITTEN ANSWER
MP: Mr Jamus Jerome Lim
To ask the Minister for Manpower for Singaporeans who earn below $1,300 per month, what is (i) the share of those who also receive Workfare Income Supplement and (ii) the average breakdown of income in terms of wage earnings only versus WIS payouts.
1. The Workfare Income Supplement (WIS) scheme encourages Singaporeans who earn lower wages and have less family support to work regularly and build up their CPF savings. Other qualifying criteria include property holdings and spousal income. This helps to ensure that Workfare provides targeted support to lower-wage workers with limited household wealth.
2. Nearly 8 in 10 Singaporean workers who are 35 years old and above and earn wages below $1,300 per month through part-time or full-time employment, receive Workfare payouts. Those not eligible live in a property with an annual value exceeding $13,000 (which covers all public housing), or own two or more properties, or have a spouse whose assessable income exceeds $70,000.
3. Workfare payouts vary according to salary and age. The average monthly salary of employed Singaporeans who are eligible for Workfare, is $1,300. About two-thirds of Workfare recipients are aged 55 and above. For those aged 60 and above, the annual Workfare payout of $4,000 tops up this average income by 26%, while for those aged 55 to 59, the annual Workfare payout of $3,300 provides a 21% boost. For younger age groups, the annual Workfare payouts range from $1,700 to $2,500, providing income top-ups of between 11% and 16%.