Two new schemes that aim to help lower to middle-income workers and the self-employed, as well as taxi and private-hire car drivers have been unveiled.
The Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) said today (December 16) that the Covid-19 Recovery Grant will be launched on January 18.
On the other hand, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said that the new Covid-19 Driver Relief Fund will replace the current Special Relief Fund for taxi and private-hire car drivers from January 2021.
COVID-19 Recovery Grant
The Covid-19 Recovery Grant focuses on lower to middle-income workers, and the self-employed.
Under the Covid-19 Recovery Grant, eligible Singaporeans and permanent residents aged 21 years old and above will receive up to S$700 per month for three months.
This applies for those who have been retrenched, had their contract terminated, or placed on no-pay leave for at least three consecutive months.
For those who are facing a salary cut of at least 50 per cent on average for three consecutive months will receive up to S$500 per month for three months.
Freelancers or the self-employed are also eligible for the grant of up to S$500 per month.
However, they have to have faced a loss in net trade income of at least 50 per cent as compared to their average income in 2019.
For all applicants, the job loss, income loss or no-pay leave should have occured after January 23 this year — the day the first Covid-19 case was detected in Singapore.
Furthermore, under the new grant, applicants’ gross monthly household income must not exceed S$7,800 or a monthly per capita income of S$2,600, prior to being affected by the pandemic.
Applications for the COVID-19 Recovery Grant will be open from January 18 to December 31 next year.
Those eligible can apply for the grant online.
COVID-19 Driver Relief Fund
Taxi and private-hire car drivers are some of the hardest-hit groups by the pandemic, as travel and tourism has been heavily muted in the nation.
Hence, active taxi and private-hire car drivers will be supported by LTA’s new Covid-19 Driver Relief Fund.
Under the new fund, taxi and private-hire car drivers are set to receive an additional S$133 million in support from the government.
This is on top of the S$55 million already committed to the Special Relief Fund, said LTA in a news release.
The new scheme will replace the Special Relief Fund which was started in February.
Under the Covid-19 Driver Relief Fund, drivers will receive S$600 per vehicle per month between January and March, and S$450 between April and June.
About 52,000 drivers who are currently eligible for the Special Relief Fund will be automatically transitioned to the COVID-19 Driver Relief Fund come January.
Featured Image Credit: Dollars And Sense, Time