Eligible SMEs, non-profit organisations in commercial properties to get rental relief

The payout will be computed based on the latest contractual gross rent between May 14 and May 29. ST PHOTO: YONG LI XUAN

SINGAPORE - Eligible retail shops, supermarkets, gyms, restaurants, cinemas, tuition centres and clinics will get more help with their rental costs, amid tighter restrictions to curb the spread of Covid-19 in the community.

Rental relief will be offered to small and medium-sized enterprises as well as non-profit organisations with an annual revenue of not more than $100 million that are tenants of qualifying commercial properties, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) said on Friday (May 28).

These commercial properties include shops, private schools, theatres, childcare centres, sports and recreational buildings, premises of tourist attractions and meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions venues.

The measure is part of an $800 million support package announced by Finance Minister Lawrence Wong to help businesses and workers cope with the impact of tightened Covid-19 restrictions.

Mr Wong, who co-chairs the multi-ministry task force on Covid-19, said the Government will help businesses with cash flow concerns by supporting their rental costs.

Qualifying tenants in government-owned commercial properties will receive one month of rental relief.

Already, hawker stalls and coffee shops in such government-owned premises are given a one-month rental waiver during this period of heightened alert.

Tenants are required to pass down the rental relief received to qualifying sub-tenants.

For privately-owned commercial properties, the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (Iras) will disburse a half-month rental relief cash payout directly to qualifying tenants as part of a new rental support scheme.

The payout will be disbursed from mid-August, and computed based on the latest contractual gross rent between May 14 and May 29.

This is on top of the rental waivers or rebates that some landlords are offering to support their tenants during this period.

On Friday, Mr Wong highlighted how some companies such as CapitaLand and City Developments Limited are offering additional help to their tenants during this challenging period, including rental rebates and operational support.

He also urged landlords to match the half-month rental relief to support their tenants.

Separately, property owners running an SME or non-profit organisation on their own property will also be eligible for the cash payout. This is computed based on the annual value of the property, or part of it, for this year as at May 14.

Most qualifying tenants and owner-occupiers will receive the cash payout automatically without needing to submit an application, said MOF in a statement.

The cash payout will not be disbursed automatically to tenants who only rent part of a property, or to tenants who rent a mixed-use property such as a shophouse for both retail and residential use, or to licensees.

The ministry encouraged these businesses to submit an application to Iras, and provide supporting documents.

Iras will share more details of the rental support scheme and application process on its website by the middle of next month.

Types of properties that qualify for relief

  • Hotel rooms, serviced apartments or function rooms at those properties.
  • Venues for meetings, incentive travel, conventions and exhibitions.
  • Premises of international cruise or ferry terminals, and of tourist attractions.
  • Shops, warehouse retail outlets, amusement centres, cinemas or theatres.
  • Restaurants, including foodcourts, coffee shops, market and hawker stalls, bars and nightclubs.
  • Sports and recreational buildings, including golf clubs.
  • Childcare centres or kindergartens, and schools, including tuition centres.
  • Healthcare buildings.
  • Backpackers' and students' hostels, or boarding houses.
  • Carparks used in connection with the operation of the listed qualifying properties.
  • Spaces used in connection with the operation of the listed qualifying properties and shophouses used for the purposes listed, excluding certain premises like land under redevelopment.


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