Top stories from Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat's Budget statement

Good evening! Here are the main headlines from Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat's Budget statement in Parliament on Monday (Feb 18).   


10 things to know, from Bicentennial Bonus to Merdeka Generation Package

Curious about what's in store for you in this year's Budget? Here are 10 things you need to know.

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$1.1b Bicentennial Bonus for Singaporeans, including GST Voucher cash payouts

To celebrate the bicentennial year, a $1.1 billion Bicentennial Bonus will be shared with Singaporeans.

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$6.1b for Merdeka Generation package includes Medisave top-ups, higher Chas subsidies

A total of $6.1 billion will be set aside under the Merdeka Generation Package, the bulk of which will go towards easing the burden of healthcare costs for nearly 500,000 Singaporeans.

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Lower foreign worker quota in services sector; continued support for unemployed PMETs

The Government is tightening the Dependency Ratio Ceiling, or the proportion of foreign workers a firm can employ.

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Measures to tackle healthcare costs, support companies and workers

Highlighting four major global shifts, including a decline in support for globalisation, Mr Heng Swee Keat also flagged longer-term domestic challenges such as ageing, social mobility and economic transformation.

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30 per cent of total spending set aside for defence, security and diplomacy efforts

It is "a significant but indispensable spending", said Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat.

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A pleasant surprise for the Merdeka Generation

The Merdeka Generation package for Singaporeans born in the 1950s has turned out to be more generous than anticipated.

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Smaller duty-free alcohol allowance and GST relief for overseas shopping

From Tuesday, returning travellers will have a smaller allowance on tax-exempt overseas shopping.

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Diesel duty at pumps doubles to 20 cents per litre

At the same time, upfront taxes for diesel vehicles will be pared down further from where they were when diesel duty was first reintroduced at the pumps in 2017.

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Higher payouts under Workfare, more support for older workers

Lower-wage workers will receive higher payouts under a government scheme to help them supplement their income and Central Provident Fund savings.

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