Friday, April 29, 2011

Singapore 2011 Budget

Dear All,When I post this, detractors will immediately ask me to migrate to Singapore.
Why should I?
I love this country, therefore I want it to improve for the sake of not myself, but for my children, friends, family and fellow countrymen.

Do you know what to do at the next GE? Think and vote wisely.

Singapore 2011 Budget

Slew of Budget goodies unveiled

Singapore’s Minister for Finance, Mr Tharman Shanmuganathan, delivers the Budget Speech for the Financial Year 2011. (AP Photo)
Singaporeans will receive a total of S$6.6 billion of benefits in the 2011 Singapore Budget announced by Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Friday.
$3.2 billion Grow and Share Package: The average Singaporean household will receive S$3,500 from this year’s Budget. This will come from the S$3.2 billion to be spent on the “Grow and Share Package” and S$3.4 billion in longer-term Social Investments for households this year.
All adult Singaporeans will also receive Growth Dividends to share the fruits of last year’s exceptional economic growth. The majority of Singaporeans – 80% – will get $600 to $800 each.
CPF rate revision: The Government will raise the employer contribution rate to CPF accounts by another 0.5 percentage points, from 15.5% to 16%, which will restore the total contribution, rate to 36%. The additional 0.5% will go into the Special Account.
The Government will also revise the CPF salary ceiling from $4,500 to $5,000 per month to keep pace with income growth in recent years. This will align the salary ceiling back to the 80th percentile income, and help middle-income Singaporeans.
Radio and TV licence fees removed permanently: The annual licence fee of S$110 for televisions and S$27 for vehicle radios will be removed with immediate effect. Those who have not paid this year’s fees will not have to make the payment, while a refund will be given to those who have already paid.
Mr Tharman said that’s because the fees are losing their relevance. He said televisions are no longer limited to middle and higher-income groups, with 99% of lower-income households owning them today.
Tax cuts: Singaporeans will receive a personal income tax rebate of 20% for individual resident taxpayers for YA 2011. The rebate will be capped at $2,000. Taxes will be reduced significantly for middle and upper-middle income families. Marginal tax rates will be reduced for first S$120,000 of chargeable income.
Levy increase for foreign workers: The Government will also introduce more levy increases on foreign workers for all sectors this year. Most of the additional measures will be phased in at six-monthly intervals, starting only from 1 January 2012, and extending till 1 July 2013, one year beyond the previous schedule.
S$10 billion home upgrading: $10 billion will be spent to upgrade homes and rejuvenate estates over the next 10 years. This is a major effort to preserve the value of HDB flats and will go towards the Home Improvement Programme (HIP), Neighbourhood Renewal Programme (NRP) and Lift Upgrading Programme (LUP), it will invest up to $55,000 per flat.
Low-income groups will also receive additional housing subsidies to better afford their homes. The Government will set aside S$175 million each year for the new Special CPF Housing Grant to help the bottom 50% Singapore households own their homes.
For more details, refer to the speech summary below or read the full transcript here.

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