Help with cleaning costs for businesses with Covid-19 cases

Half the professional cleaning costs incurred by owners or managers of premises with confirmed Covid-19 cases will be paid for under a new government assistance scheme.

Details of the scheme, in effect from April 1 to Dec 31, were announced by the National Environment Agency (NEA), Enterprise Singapore (ESG) and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) yesterday. It will apply to all kinds of premises.

In a joint statement, the agencies acknowledged that hiring third-party professional cleaning services for disinfection can be costly. Under the scheme, 50 per cent of such costs will be subsidised, capped at $3,000. A higher cap of $20,000 applies for tourism-related premises, which are typically larger than homes or commercial units.

Applicants should visit the agencies' websites to apply.

Homes, offices, religious institutions and food premises in non-retail buildings should go to NEA, while businesses in retail malls should approach ESG. Hotels, tourist attractions and exhibition halls, among others, should go to STB.

Providing an update on the SG Clean quality mark certification process launched in February, the agencies said more than 9,000 premises have received the quality mark as of Monday.

To enable more to come on board, certification fees will continue to be free this year and the next for more than 32,000 premises.

The agencies said: "Collectively, the assistance scheme and waiver of certification fees for the SG Clean quality mark will help to defray costs for businesses and individuals during this challenging period."

Funding support for cleaning, waste and pest management businesses under the $30 million Productivity Solutions Grant has also been increased again, NEA said. Successful applicants can get funding of up to 80 per cent of the qualifying cost, capped at $350,000, up from 70 per cent.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 18, 2020, with the headline Help with cleaning costs for businesses with Covid-19 cases. Subscribe