Well, it is that time of the year- Budget time! Budget 2016 focused on industry-wide transformations, people development, affordable and high standard housing for certain classes, and security. So what does Budget 2017 have in store for us? Well, we will know for sure only on February 20. But for now, let us look into what we can expect from Singapore Budget 2017!
The budget will focus on the economy
Last year’s Budget focused mainly on spending on social needs, but social needs might not be the focal point this year. According to statements made by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, this year’s Budget will focus mainly on Singapore’s immediate economic needs. This year’s Budget will also include measures to implement longer term strategies set out by the Committee for the Future Economy (CFE) last week.
Expect encouragement for R&D, innovation, and scaling up
Budget 2016 introduced new schemes and packages with grants, additional tax allowances and enhanced financial support for projects that are undertaken by businesses to automate and scale up.
Well, there is some good news for industries if our speculation is right as this year, we may witness better grants and higher risk-sharing by the Government. These steps will definitely help companies invest in digital technologies, advanced manufacturing, and robotics.
Individuals with disabilities, the elderly and young families to get additional support
Last year’s Budget focused quite a bit on a higher standard of living for the elderly at an affordable price. This year’s Budget might take it a step further by offering support to disabled individuals, young families along with the elderly.
The Government has already hinted that disabled individuals residing in Singapore have something to look forward to in Budget 2017. The same is applicable for young families and elder individuals. This year’s Budget is going to focus education and employment of disabled individuals along with their integration into the society.
Unfortunately, the high cost of living in Singapore is discouraging many Singaporeans from starting a family. Instead of coming up focusing on generous Baby Bonus schemes, we can expect better incentives that will get employers to provide flexible work arrangements to young parents.
Initiatives to encourage businesses to go international
Companies with potential to compete and scale up can expect encouragement from this year’s Budget. The Government has already announced new initiatives that are aimed at increasing financing options for the growth of these companies and build the necessary technology infrastructure to encourage innovation. Growing companies can expect additional grants and tax incentives that will help them go global in this year’s Budget.
While these are our predictions as to what you can expect from this year’s Budget, we will know for sure what the Budget holds for Singaporeans only on February 20, 2017.