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Wage Credit Scheme Payouts For 2019

Employers are reminded to make CPF contributions for employees
by 14 January 2019 to receive Wage Credit Scheme payouts

1.    Employers of eligible Singaporean employees are reminded to make the full CPF contributions for these employees by 14 January 2019 in order to receive the sixth tranche of Wage Credit Scheme (WCS) payouts in March 2019.

2.     To qualify for the sixth tranche of the WCS payouts, employers must fulfil the following conditions:

a, Have given Singaporean employees a gross monthly wage[1] increase of at least $50 in 2018 and/or have sustained the gross monthly wage increase (at least $50) previously given to employees in 2017; and

b. Have paid the employees’ mandatory CPF contributions on 2018 wages to the CPF Board by 14 January 2019[2].

3.     Employers do not need to apply to receive the WCS payouts. Eligible employers will receive letters from the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) by March 2019 informing them of the amount of WCS payouts to be received. The payouts will be credited directly into their company’s GIRO bank account used for Income Tax and GST, or their bank account that is registered with PayNow Corporate[3]. Employers who are not on these direct crediting modes are encouraged to sign up for PayNow Corporate by 14 January 2019.

4.     Since the WCS was introduced to support wage increases made over 2013 to 2015, it has been extended for two years (2016 to 2017), and in Budget 2018 further extended for three more years, i.e. 2018, 2019 and 2020. The WCS supports businesses embarking on transformation efforts and encourage sharing of productivity gains with workers. The Government will continue to fund 20% of wage increases in 2018. This co-funding ratio will be stepped down to 15% in 2019 and 10% in 2020.

5.     Please refer to the Annex for details on the WCS. For more information, visit IRAS’ website (www.iras.gov.sg/irasHome/wcs.aspx), contact IRAS at 1800-352-4727 or email wcs@iras.gov.sg.

Severe penalties for abusing Wage Credit Scheme

6.     The Government takes a serious view of attempts to abuse the WCS. Offenders can be charged under Section 420 of the Penal Code for abusing the scheme, where they may face up to 10 years of imprisonment and a fine.

Issued by:

 Ministry of Finance

Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore

Singapore

26 December 2018

[1] Gross monthly wage is defined as total wage of the employee paid by the employer in the calendar year (including basic salary, overtime pay and bonuses), divided by the number of months of CPF contribution.

[2] Employers are required to make CPF contributions within 14 days from the end of each month for which CPF contributions are due. If the 14th day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday, CPF contributions must be paid immediately on the next working day. Late payment interest will otherwise apply.

[3] Companies can sign up for PayNow Corporate by linking their company’s UEN (without suffix) to their bank account via internet banking. For assistance, please approach the banks.

 

Annex

Wage Credit Scheme (WCS) Factsheet

Who is eligible?

1.     In any calendar year from 2013 to 2020, employers qualify for WCS payouts if they give wage increases of at least $50 to employees who are on their payroll for at least three months in the qualifying year, and who received CPF contributions for at least three months in the preceding year. Employees could have been on the payroll of a different employer in the preceding year, but they must be on the payroll of a single employer for at least three months in the qualifying year.

2.     All Singapore Citizen employees who received CPF contributions, including full-time, part-time and casual employees, are covered by the WCS.

3.     Employers in the following government related-entities or entities not registered in Singapore, are not eligible for the WCS:

a. Local Government Agencies, including Organs of State, Ministries and Departments, Statutory Boards

b. Government and Government-Aided Schools

c. People’s Association Services and Grassroots Units

d. High Commissions, Embassies, Trade Offices, Consulates

e. Unregistered Local/Foreign Entities

f. Foreign Military Units

g. Representative offices of Foreign companies, Foreign Government Agencies, Foreign Trade Associations, Foreign Chambers, Foreign Non-profit Organisations, and Foreign Law Practices

h. Bank Representative Offices/ Insurance Representative Offices/ Other Financial Representative Offices (registered with MAS)

i. News Bureaus (which are representative offices)

j. International Organisations

What wage increases qualify for WCS payouts?

4.     Wage increases are computed on an annual basis, based on the difference between the gross monthly wage of an employee in the qualifying year and the gross monthly wage of the employee in the preceding year. For each qualifying year, WCS payouts will be paid to the employer for all the months in the year in which CPF contributions are made by him for the employee. For the sixth payout, new wage increases given to employees in 2018 over 2017, as well as sustained wage increase previously given to employees in 2017 over 2016, will qualify for WCS payouts. All wage increases and sustained wage increases must be at least $50 to qualify for WCS payouts.

When will employers receive WCS payouts?

5.     For each year that an employer qualifies for WCS payouts, he will receive the WCS payouts at the end of March in the subsequent year. The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS), which is the administrator of the Wage Credit Scheme, will notify the employer of his payout by post. Employers do not need to apply to receive the WCS payouts.

Will employers receive WCS payouts if they do not use PayNow Corporate

6.     Employers who are not registered on PayNow Corporate will still receive WCS payouts based on existing modes of payment (i.e. via GIRO or cheques).

When do employers have to pay CPF contributions?

7.     CPF contributions are due at the end of each month and must be paid by the 14th of the following month. If the 14th day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday, CPF contributions must be paid immediately on the next working day.

8.     If CPF contributions are not paid on time, employers will receive a notice to pay the outstanding CPF contributions, and late payment interest would apply. For more information, please visit www.cpf.gov.sg/Employers.

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Last Updated on December 04, 2017
© 2018 Government of Singapore