Self-employed people, firms and first-time jobseekers will receive more financial support under COVID19 Budget
SINGAPORE: Self-employed persons, firms and first-time jobseekers will receive more financial support, announced Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee ...Jobs Support Scheme , introduced during Budget this year, will be enhanced and extended, said Mr Heng. The scheme aims to help firms retain local workers during this period of uncertainty. “The situation now calls for bolder and more aggressive moves to save jobs and keep workers in employment,” he said. For firms, the Government will co-fund 25 per cent of every local employee’s wage, up from eight per cent. Firms in the food services sector will receive 50 per cent co-funding per local worker, while firms in the aviation and tourism sectors – the most badly affected sectors – will receive 75 per cent co-funding. More workers will also qualify for co-funding, with the qualifying wage ceiling raised from S$3,600 to S$4,600. The median wage in Singapore is S$4,600. The Jobs Support Scheme will also be extended for two quarters until the end of 2020. Employers will receive payouts in May, July and October. Effectively, a total of S$15.1 billion will be allocated to 1.9 million local workers under the Jobs Support Scheme, more than twice the support provided during the Global Financial Crisis. “With this support from the Government, I urge employers to do your part to hold on to your workers,” said Mr Heng. MORE JOBS FOR FIRST-TIME JOBSEEKERS For first-time jobseekers concerned about the current job market, the Government will offer traineeships and provide more help to find employment for them. The SGUnited Traineeships will give young people the opportunity to “gain valuable work experience” and give “an added boost for employers to emerge stronger from this crisis”, said Mr Heng. “Under this programme, Workforce Singapore will co-share manpower costs with enterprises that offer traineeships targeted at local first-time jobseekers this year,” he said, adding that he hoped to support up to 8,000 traineeships this year, across large and small enteprises. “This will include science and technology traineeships in our R&D labs, deep-tech startups, accelerators and incubators,” he said, with more details to be announced by the Minsitry of Manpower. In addition, the Government will set up an SGUnited Jobs initiative, to create about 10,000 jobs over the next year, with the public sector taking the lead. “Our agencies have been planning our manpower needs early, and there is a range of jobs which we need to fill in emerging areas. “We will accelerate hiring plans to fill these roles, while giving our people meaningful employment opportunities,” he said. This includes long-term roles in areas such as social services, early childhood education and ICT to enhance provision of essential services, and short-term temporary jobs like health declaration assistants, temporary management support officers and Transport Ambassadors to handle the increase in COVID-19 related operations. At the same time, the Government is also working with the Singapore Business Federation and Trade Associations and Chambers to identify jobs in the private sector. “These may come from businesses recruiting for the eventual recovery, or with short-term manpower needs due to disruptions in labour supply,” he said. He added that Workforce Singapore will be holding a virtual career fair on Friday with more than 2,200 job vacancies, with a focus on short-term temporary jobs that are immediately available. Read more: CNA
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