SINGAPORE - President Tony Tan Keng Yam has given his assent to the Budget and commented on it in a Facebook post on Friday (April 15).
"In accordance with the Constitution, Supply Bill 2016 which authorises the government expenditures proposed in Budget 2016 has been presented to me for assent after it was passed by Parliament," he wrote.
He said the initiatives to transform Singapore's economy through enterprise and innovation, and prepare Singaporeans for new and better jobs through skills development, are forward-looking.
"The Budget also seeks to build a caring and resilient society with a focus on both our young and our seniors," he added.
Noting that the Government expects an overall budget surplus of $3.4 billion this year, he said, "This is a responsible, prudent and balanced Budget that prepares Singapore for the future while taking care of our current needs".
While Budget 2016 has been debated extensively in Parliament, the Ministry of Finance has also separately given the Council of Presidential Advisers and him a detailed briefing on the Budget, Dr Tan wrote.
"As required by the Constitution, the Council has considered the proposed Budget and recommended that I assent to the Supply Bill on the basis that the Budget is unlikely to draw on the Government’s Past Reserves.
"I concur with the Council’s recommendation and have exercised the President’s discretionary power provided for under the Constitution to give my assent to the Supply Bill," he wrote.
Parliament on Thursday (April 14) approved a $79.7 billion Budget trained on transforming the economy and building a more caring and resilient society.
These twin spirits of enterprise and care for one another are what will enable Singapore to thrive for another 50 years, said Leader of the House Grace Fu as she wrapped up the debate on the Government's spending plans.
MPs filed 499 cuts to ministries' budgets this year, the highest in the past five such debates. Each cut lets them speak on the policies and programmes of the ministries.