Singapore extends Jobs Support Scheme for worst-hit sectors as part of S$11 billion package
The Jobs Support Scheme (JSS), which helps retain jobs by subsidising workers’ salaries, will be extended for sectors which continue to be hard-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said the move comes as part of an S$11 billion COVID-19 Resilience Package that aims to tackle the “immediate tasks” of continuing the fight against the pandemic.
The package will focus on three prongs: Continuing to support workers and businesses, safeguarding public health and providing targeted help to sectors that are still under stress. Mr Heng noted that the slew of Budget measures announced last year helped prevent “deep economic scarring and permanent impairing” of Singapore’s economy. In particular, the JSS was meant to protect jobs and help firms retain local workers.
The JSS, which was first introduced in the Budget 2020 statement last February, has subsidised between 25 and 75 per cent of wages for firms. This is the fourth extension of the scheme, and will cost the Government another S$700 million. “So far, we have committed over S$25 billion to the JSS, and supported over 155,000 employers for up to 17 months. The current tranche will continue to cover wages up to March 2021 for most sectors,” Mr Heng said.