SINGAPORE: In yet another far-reaching decision, the Singapore government has decided to pay up to 75 per cent of the wages of all Singaporeans and permanent resident workers for the month of April due to economic devastation caused by COVID-19.
Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat told Parliament on Monday that workers will also receive first payout under the enhanced Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) this month, instead of next month, to help with cash flow.
It is the third set of measures to save businesses and jobs from the fallout of coronavirus pandemic, reports the Straits Times.
The wage subsidy applies to the first 4,600 Singapore dollars of wages paid this month for each of the more than 1.9 million Singaporean and permanent resident employees.
Heng said many firms cannot operate at all, or can only operate at a much-reduced level in the coming weeks due to the strict circuit breaker measures announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong last Friday.
Most workplaces, apart from those providing essential services or in key economic sectors, will be closed for about a month from Tuesday in order to break the chain of transmission of COVID-19.
But firms should still retain and pay their workers, said Heng. This will also enable them to resume operations quickly when the circuit breaker is lifted.