Budget 2019

Merdeka Generation Package: Time to move beyond one-time 'packages'

The emergence of the Merdeka Generation Package (MGP) a few years after the Pioneer Generation Package (PGP) has prompted questions from analysts, such as Dr Jeremy Lim (Pioneer, Merdeka Generation Packages: Gig-economy generation may need more help, published in The Straits Times, Feb 21), about the efficiency and fairness of a cohort-by-cohort rather than unified approach to healthcare.

Building on this, we can see implications for the more fundamental question of how to organise the use of public resources to meet needs and level inequalities. People naturally begin to imagine a third package, or a fourth, or more, for subsequent cohorts, but what principles would govern these measures?

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 22, 2019, with the headline 'Merdeka Generation Package: Time to move beyond one-time 'packages''. Print Edition | Subscribe