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Speech By Deputy Prime Minister and Minister For Finance Lawrence Wong at The Launch Of CDC Vouchers Scheme 2024

03 Jan 2024
Mayors and Parliamentary Colleagues
CDC District Councillors 
President of the Federation of Merchants’ Associations Singapore 
Chairman of the Heartland Enterprise Centre Singapore 
Community and Corporate Partners
Ladies and Gentlemen
1.   Happy new year to all of you! It’s so good to see everyone gathered here today. This is my first work event of 2024. I’m glad that we are all off to a good start with the launch of the 2024 CDC vouchers.  Let me start with a few words in Mandarin, and then I will continue in English. 

2.   各位女士们,先生们,大家早上好。首先,让我祝大家新年快乐。

3.   我们自2021年推行了邻里购物券。自推出之后,这是其中最受欢迎的政府援助计划之一。

4.   所以,我很高兴宣布,从今天开始,每个新加坡家庭都能上网领取500元的邻里购物券。

5.   那些无法在网上领取购物券的居民,也可以到附近的联络所获得帮助。

6.   我们按照之前的做法,就是把邻里购物券平均分为两部分 - 其中的250元可以在邻里商店和小贩中心使用,另外的250元可以在超市使用。

7.   今年,大家也可以在更多的地方使用邻里购物券。

8.   因为有更多邻里商店和小贩中心摊位参与了这个计划 –目前超过2万3千家。此外,大家也可以在8家连锁超市的不同分店使用邻里购物券。

9.   我要感谢我们的市长们,社区发展理事会和参与的商户, 小贩及超市业者。因为有了你们的贡献和努力,邻里购物券计划才能取得成功。

10.   所谓“新年新希望”,我相信大家在迎接2024年的同时,也能继续齐心协力,共创更美好的未来。  

11.   As you heard just now, Mayor Low said we launched the digital CDC Vouchers first in December 2021. At that time, the aim of the CDC Vouchers was to support our heartland merchants and hawkers, all of whom were badly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.  It was also to express our appreciation to Singaporeans for their solidarity during those difficult years.  

12.   The pandemic is over. But we face new challenges.  In particular, the geopolitical uncertainties in the external environment, as well as the continued disruptions in food and energy supplies have contributed to higher inflation – both globally and in Singapore. 

13.   That’s why the Government decided to continue with the CDC Vouchers.  We’ve also progressively increased the amount of vouchers disbursed.   

       a. In 2021 and 2022, we started with $100 in CDC Vouchers.

       b. In 2023, we increased the CDC Vouchers to $300. We took in your feedback, and we expanded the use of these vouchers not just to heartland shops and hawker centres, but also to supermarkets.

14.   Year after year, the CDC Vouchers have been well received by everyone.  

       a. In fact, CDC Vouchers have become a household name in Singapore. You pull someone on the street and ask him or her, “Do you know what CDC Vouchers are?” I am quite sure most people will say “Yes” and that they are familiar.

       b. CDC Vouchers is also one of the top local keyword searches on Google in Singapore, because everyone is looking for CDC Vouchers!
       c. Last year, virtually all Singaporean households claimed the CDC Vouchers. 

       d. Amongst the vouchers that were claimed, nearly 97% of the vouchers have been spent.  

       e. Some households have not claimed or fully spent their Vouchers, but many of them have generously donated their Vouchers to charity.  

       f. In fact, the CDC Vouchers website will continue to accept donations of your vouchers till end of the month.  So, for any of you out here, if you know of friends or family members who have not fully used their CDC Vouchers, please encourage them to donate the vouchers to a good cause. 

       g. Go to the CDC Voucher website and donate the Vouchers to charity. These are the 2023 Vouchers, you cannot use them anymore. Expired already! But if you have un-used Vouchers or for some reason, if you are the very few who have not even claimed the Vouchers, it’s ok. Donate them to charity. Go to the CDC Voucher website and donate them to a charity of your choice. Many households have done so, so we want even more to help donate to this good cause.

15.   We want to also thank everyone who has been involved in making the CDC Vouchers Scheme such a success in Singapore. 

16.   You’ve heard just now from the emcee and Mayor Low, all the different parties who have been involved – our Mayors, District Councillors, CDC, PA, Government officials, participating merchants, hawkers, and supermarket operators. 

17.   Everyone who has come together to implement the CDC Vouchers Scheme successfully. Let’s give everyone a big round of applause to acknowledge their efforts and hard work. Thank you very much.

18.   Today I am very glad to announce the launch of the fourth tranche of CDC Vouchers.  

       a. From today onwards, every Singaporean household will receive $500 worth of CDC Vouchers.

       b. You can see the trend. We started with $100. Last year, $300. This year, $500. I don't know what the future will hold, but hopefully it continues to be on a positive trend.

       c. You can claim the CDC Vouchers this year in the same way as the last three rounds, go to the website (, log in with SingPass, then they will send the link and you can redeem your Vouchers.  If you face difficulties with claiming the Vouchers online, then go to the Community Centres and they will be able to assist you.

       d. Like in 2023, we will split the vouchers into two equal parts: half of the vouchers, $250, can be used at the participating heartland shops, merchants and hawkers; the other half can be used at the participating supermarkets.

19.   The good news is that we have also expanded the network of participating merchants, which means that the CDC Vouchers this year can be used at more places.

       a. When we started off in 2021, we had about 11,000 participating merchants and hawkers.

       b. Now the number has more than doubled to over 23,000 heartland businesses.  

       c. We have also increased the number of participating supermarkets where you can spend your vouchers at.  

       d. There are now 8 participating supermarket chains and amongst them, they have a total of 415 outlets. So, whether it is supermarkets or heartland shops, you have many more options to use the Vouchers.

       e. As you heard from Mayor Low just now, quite a number of merchants, shops, and supermarkets are going beyond just participating in the scheme – they are also extending their own discounts and rebates, so if you use the CDC vouchers there, you will get additional rebates. I will leave the merchants and supermarkets to publicise the details of their individual schemes on their own.  I’m sure customers will welcome this additional help.

20.   Singaporeans have the whole of this year to claim and use the CDC Vouchers.  So you don’t have to rush and do it by today, but remember to use your vouchers by 31 Dec 2024, and encourage your family and friends to do the same. 

21.   The CDC Vouchers Scheme is part of a comprehensive package that the Government has implemented to cushion the effects of inflation. 

22.   On top of the CDC Vouchers, as all of you know, we are providing assistance in many different ways.

        a. Last month, all adult Singaporeans, everyone above 21 years old, would have received up to $800 in cash from the Assurance Package. The higher income will get less, but the lower income will get the maximum of $800. 

       b. Today, we are launching the CDC Vouchers. Next month, there will be cash payouts for eligible seniors and MediSave top-ups for seniors and children.

       c. Throughout the year, there will be an entire schedule of assistance and payouts, including additional U-Save rebates – that’s utilities rebates to help HDB households with their electricity and water bills, as well as additional rebates to offset their service and conservancy charges. So we are all in to help Singaporeans cope with higher prices.

23.   2023 was a challenging year.

       a. We’ve seen geopolitical tensions weighing heavily on the global economy.  

       b. We’ve seen the start of a terrible conflict in the Middle East that has caused many lives.  It has also spilled over to cause shipping disruptions in the Red Sea and this has impacted supply chains.

       c. The difficult external environment has resulted in lower growth in Singapore over the past year. We avoided a recession.  But real income growth was weak, and many households are feeling the pressure of a higher cost of living.  

24.   There are some signs that 2024 will be better.  

       a. We expect gradual improvements in the economy, especially for the manufacturing sector.  

       b. Inflation should continue on a broad moderating trend, globally and in Singapore. 

       c. But there are downside risks and dark clouds ahead of us. 

          i. We have armed conflict and violence around the world.

          ii. We continue to see geopolitical tensions everywhere as the major powers contest for influence.

          iii. All these can have an impact on the global economy which remains vulnerable and fragile. And if the global economy is impacted, Singapore's economy will also be impacted.

25.   Therefore, the Government is monitoring the situation in the external environment very closely. MOF is now working on Budget 2024.  We are studying additional measures to support Singaporeans, including ideas that have been surfaced through the Forward Singapore exercise last year.  

26.   In the end, the Government’s schemes are not just about financial support. They reflect our priorities and our values in Singapore – that those who are better off and do well in life should do their part to contribute and give back to society, so the government can use the revenues it collects to help those with greater needs, those who are more vulnerable, and those with lower incomes.  

       a. That is how we support one another, and help each other through difficult times.

       b. That is how we hold our society together, and uphold the trust we have in each other as Singaporeans.  

27.   I cannot tell what 2024 will bring.  

       a. The only thing that is certain in life is that it is full of uncertainty.

       b. The other one thing we can be sure of is that the world will continue to surprise us with new challenges and threats.

28.   We have to take all these changes in our stride, and adapt and thrive in this new environment. But we do so with confidence because we are moving forward from a position of strength in Singapore.  We have a strong sense of social solidarity and a united people.  Through Forward Singapore, we are taking further steps to refresh our social compact, and to chart our new way forward in a troubled world.  Together, we can be confident that we will overcome every challenge, seize new opportunities, and build our shared future for a better Singapore and a better 2024. Thank you very much and enjoy your CDC Vouchers.