Singapore Budget 2024 – Highlights for Businesses and HR Leaders

On Friday, 16 February 2024, Mr. Lawrence Wong, the Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister for Finance, presented Singapore’s 2024 Budget – allocating S$131 billion to “build a more resilient and cohesive nation.”

Below, we outline the key points that businesses and HR leaders should be aware of:

1. Central Provident Fund (CPF)

The Singapore Budget 2024 covers some extensive updates to the Central Provident Fund (CPF):

  • Senior workers’ Central Provident Fund (CPF) contribution rates for those aged 55 to 65 will be increased, effective from 1 January 2025. Employers will receive an extended CPF Transition Offset, covering half of the increase in 2025.
  • Increase the Enhanced Retirement Sum to S$426,000, marking a fourfold increase compared to the Basic Retirement Sum.
  • All Singaporeans will get S$100 to S$1,650 in top-ups to their CPF MediSave Account.
  • Grant a one-time bonus of S$1,000 to S$1,500 to Singaporeans with CPF retirement savings below S$99,400, deposited into their CPF Retirement or Special Account.

2. Uplift lower-wage workers

  • The qualifying monthly wage cap will be raised from S$2,500 to S$3,000, with higher Workfare payments of up to S$4,900 per year.
  • Effective 1 July 2024, the Local Qualifying Salary will be increased from S$1,400 to S$1,600, while the minimum hourly rate will be raised from S$9.00 to S$10.50 per hour.
  • The Progressive Wage Credit Scheme will be extended co-funding support for salary increases given in qualifying year 2024.

3. SkillsFuture:

According to the Singapore Budget 2024, the Singaporean government is poised to launch the SkillsFuture Level-Up Programme, aimed at providing enhanced support for mid-career workers, specifically Singaporeans aged 40 and above. This initiative encompasses several components:

  • A S$4,000 top-up to SkillsFuture Credit in May 2024, intended for utilisation in selected industry-oriented training courses with improve employability outcomes.
  • A mid-career enhanced subsidy for an additional publicly-funded full-time diploma.
  • Provision of a SkillsFuture Mid-Career Training Allowance, offering up to S$3,000 monthly for a maximum duration of 24 months, applicable to selected full-time courses.

4. Medi-Save Bonus:

The Singapore Budget 2024 will also see a one-time MediSave Bonus of up to S$300 being granted to all adults aged 21 to 50.

5. Unemployment Support:

Later in 2024, Singapore will introduce a temporary financial support scheme targeted at workers who have faced layoffs. This new initiative aims to assist affected employees in undergoing training or seeking more suitable employment opportunities.

6. Retirement Needs:

  • The Majulah Package is designed to provide support for 1.6 million Singaporeans born in 1973 or earlier, addressing their retirement and healthcare needs.
  • The Matched Retirement Savings Scheme is set to undergo expansion, encompassing Singaporeans aged 55 and above. Additionally, the annual matching cap will be increased to S$2,000, with a lifetime matching cap set at S$20,000.
  • Increase the Silver Support Scheme quarterly payment by 20% and raise the qualifying per capita household income threshold to $2,300.
  • A one-time bonus of S$750 to S$1,500 to CPF MediSave Account will be granted to Singaporean aged 51 and above.

7. Rising Business Costs:

The Singaporean government is allocating S$1.3 billion under the Singapore Budget 2024 as part of the Enterprise Support Package to assist in mitigating escalating business costs. Furthermore, enhancements will be made to the Enterprise Financing Scheme, and the SkillsFuture Enterprise Credit will see an extension until June 2025.

8. Invest in Emerging Technologies:

The Singaporean government announced a commitment to invest over S$1 billion in the next five years for the implementation of the National AI Strategy 2.0. The objective of the fund is to expand the pool of AI talent and ensure access to advanced chips that facilitate the increasing utilisation of AI. Additionally, the government plans to enhance Singapore’s nationwide broadband network, aiming for speeds of up to 10Gbps by the year 2030.

To learn more about the National AI Strategy 2.0, head over to Smart Nation Singapore: https://www.smartnation.gov.sg/nais/

Navigating the evolving landscape of labour laws can be challenging with continuous changes. Partnering with an HR service provider offers a solution to stay consistently informed. Links International stands out as an industry leader in HR outsourcing, offering services such as payroll outsourcing, visa applications, PEO/EOR services, outplacement, recruitment, and more. Contact us to discover how we can assist in optimising your business operations in 2024!

For further information on the Budget 2024, please head over to the official website of the Singaporean government: https://www.gov.sg/features/budget-2024

Read also:

  1. Singapore Visa Update: All You Need to Know About COMPASS
  2. How to Strategically Plan a Budget for HR in 2024
  3. Labour Law Insider – APAC 2024 Q1 Legislation Update
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