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Parliamentary Replies

Funds for Budget Expenditure Items Given to Beneficiaries who are Foreign Nationals or Foreign-based Institutions and Organisations in FY2020

10 Jan 2022

Parliamentary Question by Mr Leong Mun Wai:

To ask the Minister for Finance (a) whether any funds for budget expenditure items such as Social Transfers to Individuals, Transfers to Institutions and Organisations, Special Transfers Excluding Top-ups to Endowment and Trust Funds, as well as expenditures from Endowment and Trust Funds, are given to beneficiaries who are foreign nationals or foreign-based institutions and organisations; and (b) if so, how much was given to them for FY2020, respectively.

Parliamentary Reply by Minister for Finance, Mr Lawrence Wong:

The Government’s overarching priority is to enable our people and businesses to grow and thrive, and our policies are designed to benefit Singapore and Singaporeans. 

This is reflected in our spending, including the various transfers and expenditures from Endowment and Trust Funds. For example, the Government provides transfers such as Service and Conservancy Charges (S&CC) rebates for Singaporean households to support families in managing their household expenses, and the Workfare Income Supplement to uplift lower-wage Singaporeans. Another example is the Edusave Grant that is provided to every school to enhance the quality of teaching and learning, whose benefits are enjoyed by the entire school community, the vast majority of whom are Singaporeans. 

In some instances, in order to benefit Singaporeans, we may have to disburse the funds to Singapore-registered foreign companies. In the case of the Jobs Support Scheme, for example, payouts were made to employers in FY2020, including foreign-owned companies located in Singapore, to encourage retention of local workers amid economic uncertainty from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

As we do not track the beneficiaries of all our schemes, we do not have the detailed breakdown requested.