News: DPM Heng to announce fourth round of measure to help people, businesses on 26 May

May 20, 2020

According to the release, the statement would set out the plans of the government to “help businesses and individuals adapt and build resilience, in our continuing fight against the Covid-19 pandemic”. Photo: facebook.com/hengsweekeat

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat is set to deliver this year’s fourth ministerial statement on the government’s plan to help people and businesses tackle the challenges brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, reported TODAY.

The ministerial statement, which was not described as a “Budget” in the Ministry of Finance’s (MOF) media release, will be delivered in Parliament on 26 May at 3:30pm.

According to the release, the statement would set out the plans of the government to “help businesses and individuals adapt and build resilience, in our continuing fight against the Covid-19 pandemic”.

However, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong described Heng’s upcoming announcement as a “fourth Budget” during a multi-ministerial task force press conference.

The regular annual Budget announced on 18 February was described that way and was dubbed as Unity Budget.

And while the government’s recent two rounds of spending and other Covid-19 related measures were also not described that way during the initial media statements, they were eventually called “Budgets” – namely, the Resilience Budget and Solidarity Budget.

Commenting on the kind of support that can be expected from the ministerial statement, Wong revealed that firms which remained closed past “Phase One” – or the first of three phases of gradual resumption of economic and social activities from 2 June – will be among the beneficiaries.

“You have already seen the key items of the measures that we have extended support to for businesses during the circuit breaker period,” said Wong. “Those items will remain for these businesses that are unable to open in Phase One of the reopening.”

In a Facebook post, Heng said he understands the disappointment of some workers and businesses that would be unable to resume activities immediately once the circuit breaker ends.

“For these workers and businesses, the government will help tide you over this period of continued closure,” he said, noting that details will be unveiled during his statement on 26 May.

To be published on the Singapore Budget website, the full ministerial statement will also be broadcast live on radio and television, said MOF.

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Victor Kang, Digital Content Specialist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email victorkang@propertyguru.com.sg

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