Singapore Budget 2015: Tax deduction of 300 per cent the amount donated in Jubilee year

SINGAPORE - To encourage more charitable giving in this Jubilee year, donors will get a tax deduction of 300 per cent the amount they donate in 2015, as part of this year's Budget.

This means that for every $1 donated to a registered tax-deductible charity, $3 will be deducted from the donor's taxable income for the year.

"This Budget will in addition encourage the spirit of philanthropy and giving, as part of Singapore's 50th year," said Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Monday.

Since 2009, qualifying donations have been entitled to a 250 per cent tax deduction. While this was a temporary measure, it has been extended till 2015, and will be extended again to 2018.

Measures to foster charity will also extend to schools, to "encourage the spirit of giving and to raise the awareness of community causes in our students from young", he said.

The Government will donate $20,000 to each school for causes and charities they identify.

"The idea is for them to choose IPC charities - not only to raise funds for them, but to do projects with them in the community," he said, referring to Institutions of a Public Character, or charities that are allowed to collect tax-deductible donations.

The initiative will be extended to polytechnics and Institutes of Technical Education (ITE). Polytechnics will get $150,000 each, while each ITE will get $250,000 for the causes of their choice.

Charitable donations have risen significantly in recent years, the minister said. Last year, individual donations reached an all-time high of $1.25 billion, or a 30 per cent increase from 2008.

chuimin@sph.com.sg