Asia

Over 150,000 employers to get more than $3b in Jobs Support Scheme payouts from end-March

SINGAPORE – From March 30, more than 150,000 employers will receive payouts of over $3 billion under the Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) of wage subsidies. The payment will benefit over two million local employees.

Employers who have made mandatory Central Provident Fund contributions for their local employees for the months of September to December 2020 by the stipulated deadlines will qualify to receive the payout, said the Ministry of Finance (MOF) and Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (Iras) in a joint statement on Thursday (March 25).

With this payout, over $24.5 billion in JSS support would have been disbursed since the introduction of the scheme at the Unity Budget in February 2020.

For the upcoming payout in March, employers will receive up to 50 per cent support for the first $4,600 of gross monthly wages paid in September, October, November and December 2020.

Employers in the hardest-hit aviation, aerospace, and tourism sectors will get 50 per cent support; while those in food services, retail, arts and entertainment, land transport, and marine and offshore will get 30 per cent support.

Employers in the built environment sector will get 50 per cent support for wages paid in September and October 2020, and 30 per cent for November and December 2020 wages.

Employers in all other sectors will receive 10 per cent support.

“As the economy reopens in phases after the circuit breaker, firms that are not allowed to resume on-site operations will continue to receive 50 per cent support until they are allowed to do so, or until March 2021, whichever is earlier,” said the MOF and Iras.

Eligible employers will be notified by post of their payout amount later this month. They can also log in to the myTax Portal to view the electronic copy of the letter.

Those with PayNow Corporate or Giro arrangements with Iras can expect to receive the JSS payouts from March 30, while other employers will receive their cheques from April 5.

MOF and Iras added that the March payouts for some 5,500 employers will be delayed to end-April, pending a check by the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) on firms’ reopening dates used to compute JSS payouts.

All affected employers will be notified via letters and e-mails. They can also check for updates at this website. More information will be provided after the check is completed.

Support under the JSS, which was introduced last year to protect jobs and help firms retain local workers, has been tapered off for sectors which are recovering well, while those harder hit have received more help.

As announced in the Budget Statement on Feb 16, the JSS will be extended by up to six months for firms in sectors that continue to be hard hit, covering wages paid up to September.

With the extension of the JSS, these businesses will receive wage support for up to 23 months since the introduction of the scheme last year, so as to help them retain their workers. More information on the scheme can be found at this website.

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