6pm: DPM Tharman has ended his Budget speech
From personal income tax rebate of 50 per cent (capped at $1,000) to reduced maid concessionary levy, we take a look at several measures to help households cope with the cost of living.
For more on what goodies you and your family can look forward to, read the full report in our print edition on Feb 24.
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Personal income tax rates of top earners to increase
Affects top 5 per cent of earners: Increase of 2 percentage points to 22 per cent for the highest income earners, with a chargeable income above $320,000.
To take effect from YA 2017.
RECAP: Keeping costs of living affordable through:
*Personal income tax rebate
*Reduced maid levy
*Cut educational costs
*Make childcare more affordable
*Help households through GST vouchers
*S&CC rebates, depending on flat types
Foreign Domestic Worker Concessionary Levy
*Cut to $60/ month.
*Extended to households with children ages 16 and below (previously was 12 and below)
Personal Income Tax Rebate
GST vouchers: Quantum to increase. Cash component to go up by $50 across the board.
5.15pm: Help for families by keeping childcare/ education costs affordable
*Affordable childcare, reduced fees at participating childcare centres.
*Account top-ups for young Singaporeans in: Child development/ Edusave/ Post-secondary Education accounts
*Full fee waiver for Singaporean students taking national exams (PSLE, GCE 'N', 'O' and 'A' levels) in government-funded schools.
Helping the elderly: Silver Support
Supplement incomes in "modest but meaningful way".
For bottom 20 - 30 per cent of Singaporeans.
Cash supplements (averaging $600, paid quarterly) for life for eligible Singaporeans aged 65 and above.
No need to apply (automatic eligibility assessment).
MOM to implement this around 1st quarter 2016.
On retirement assurance:
People walking past the CPF Building logo at the foot of the building along Robinson Road. Photo: SPH/ ST
*Raise CPF salary ceiling from $5,000 to $6,000 from 2016: Expected to benefit 544,000 CPF members.
*Increase Supplementary Retirement Scheme (SRS) contribution cap.
*Raise CPF contribution rates - between 2 and 0.5 percentage points - for older workers aged above 50 years.
4.45pm: On retirement adequacy
Singaporeans to get greater assurance in retirement.
Four pillars of social security system: home ownership, CPF, healthcare and Workfare.
Extension of Wage Credit Scheme to 2016 and 2017:
Government will co-fund 20 per cent of wage increases given to Singaporean employees earning a gross monthly wage of $4,000 and below.
More on SkillsFuture study awards:
About 2,000 awards to be introduced - to support individuals acquiring specialised skills for future growth clusters.
About 100 fellowships (to help S’poreans achieve mastery in their respective fields) to be introduced from 2016.
For workers to upgrade:
Investments in people through SkillsFuture credit.
Each Singaporean 25 years old and above will receive an initial credit of $500 from 2016.
Further top-ups at regular intervals.
Office workers crossing a road at Robinson Road. Photo: SPH/ ST
Don't rush to use the credits.
These credits will not expire, but can only be used for education and training.
Also, mid-career Singaporeans aged 40 years old and above to get minimum 90 per cent training subsidies.
Govt will introduce Silver Support Scheme to help low-income seniors. Details to be announced later.
Today, more than 95 per cent of young adults complete post-secondary education.
Over last 5 years, median household incomes grew by 18%
Over past 5 years, median S’porean worker income grew by 11% after inflation
Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam will be delivering the Budget 2015 speech at 3.30pm today (Feb 23).
Find out what goodies are in store for you and your family.
The New Paper will be bringing you updates. Stay tuned to www.tnp.sg for more to come.