Grant for hawker equipment kicks in

Eligible hawkers can now pay as little as 20 per cent to get kitchen automation equipment, by tapping a government grant announced in March.

The Hawkers' Productivity Grant, administered by the National Environment Agency (NEA), allows stallholders to claim 80 per cent of the unit cost of equipment on a reimbursement basis, up to a total of $5,000 within three years.

As part of the Government's efforts to sustain the hawker trade and attract more new hawkers, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor launched the grant at the opening of a one-stop information and service centre for hawkers yesterday.

Located at the revamped Customer Service Centre at the HDB Hub in Toa Payoh, the centre provides information on the hawker trade for both aspiring and current hawkers, such as how to tender for a stall, where to take courses on food hygiene and how to apply for the productivity grant.

On some of the uses of the centre, Dr Khor said: "Apart from training, some hawkers are unaware of resources such as various types of equipment that can help in food preparation and suppliers' contacts for raw ingredients, which would be particularly helpful."

She added that the NEA will conduct briefings at hawker centres to help hawkers understand the types of equipment available to help them reduce their workload, especially for repetitive tasks such as chopping vegetables.

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