Pritam Singh

SINGAPORE: On Oct 26, two MPs from The Workers’ Party—Leader of the Opposition Pritam Singh (Aljunied GRC) and Mr Louis Chua (Sengkang GRC)—announced that they had filed a full motion for debate regarding Singapore’s Cost of Living Crisis. The WP said in an advisory that it understands that the debate has been scheduled for Nov 7.

𝐂𝐎𝐒𝐓 𝐎𝐅 𝐋𝐈𝐕𝐈𝐍𝐆 𝐂𝐑𝐈𝐒𝐈𝐒𝐓𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐬 𝐇𝐨𝐮𝐬𝐞 𝐜𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐬 𝐨𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐆𝐨𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐧𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐭𝐨 𝐫𝐞𝐯𝐢𝐞𝐰 𝐢𝐭𝐬 𝐩𝐨𝐥𝐢𝐜𝐢𝐞𝐬 𝐬𝐨 𝐚𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐥𝐨𝐰𝐞𝐫 𝐜𝐨𝐬𝐭 𝐨𝐟 𝐥𝐢𝐯𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐩𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐮𝐫𝐞𝐬 𝐨𝐧 𝐒𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐚𝐩𝐨𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐧𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐢𝐫 𝐟𝐚𝐦𝐢𝐥𝐢𝐞𝐬,” is the subject of the motion, and the WP said it would engage in robust debate with the government concerning measures that can be taken to reduce the burdens people feel due to increases in living costs.

Read also: Jamus Lim Addresses Rising Living Costs: Residents Feel the Squeeze from Rapid Price Hikes

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The WP explained the background for the motion, saying that the pressures from higher living costs have been a recurrent issue in many of the engagements they’ve had on the ground with residents.

Many have expressed their concerns to us around the concurrent price increases for food, water, housing, and both public and private transport, among others. With the Goods & Services Tax (GST) scheduled to increase yet again to nine per cent in 2024, this could add further pressures to the cost of living crisis faced by many Singaporeans and their families,” said the WP.

The party believes that raising the topic is relevant at the moment since the end of the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, have brought about inflationary measures that have affected the world, forcing everyone, including Singaporeans, to “adjust to the new realities.”

Read related: Cost of living crisis: Defer GST hike, says WP MP Louis Chua

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The WP also said that they are calling the situation of higher living costs a “crisis” for this reason. “On top of inflation due to economic adjustments, our fellow Singaporeans have also been hit by rising costs and prices of public goods and services, and the schedule of increases will extend into 2025, for another two years.”

“The Workers’ Party is cognisant of the struggles and challenges in the daily lives of Singaporeans and their families, and mindful that many feel voiceless, hopeless and helpless as they brace for ever more belt tightening,” the party added.

WP MP Jamus Lim (Sengkang GRC) also addressed the issue lately, having heard from residents that they are a pressing concern. “There was a common theme, however: that the recent price increases—postal, water, gas, and electricity—were all coming on the back of already-substantial spikes in the cost of food. Their proximity and size led one resident to exclaim that these were ‘too close, too many, can’t breathe’,” wrote the MP in a Facebook post last month. /TISG