More help for Singapore companies to retain employees and pay salaries

The latest tranche of payouts in the Jobs Support Scheme is designed primarily to help employers pay the wages of about 1.9 million local employees.
By: | October 19, 2020

From October 29, 140,000 employers in Singapore will be receiving more than SGD$5.5 billion (USD$4 billion) to help subsidise the wages of about 1.9 million local employees.

The latest tranche of payouts under Singapore’s Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) will add to the S$4 billion (USD$2.9 billion) companies received in July this year, as the Singapore government looks to help companies retain and pay their workers.

Sectors that have been most severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including aviation, tourism and built environment sectors, will see the government co-funding 75% of their employees’ wages paid in the months of June, July August this year.

Those in the food services, retail, arts and entertainment, land transport, and marine and offshore, will receive 50% support, while employers in all other sectors will receive 25% support.

READ: Singapore employers to receive S$4 billion to pay wages

Despite these efforts, however, Singapore recorded a decade-high 3.4% unemployment rate this August, while steep salary cuts continue to impact many workers in Singapore.

Last week, the National Wages Council (NWC) said that employers in Singapore may implement temporary wage cuts if it means saving jobs.  However, the NWC stressed that companies should seek employees’ support before doing so, and employees should be informed how their wages will eventually be restored.

The guidelines, which will apply from November 1 to June 30 next year, are not compulsory but have been accepted by the Singapore government, said the NWC.