The Singapore government Monday announced that all Singaporeans aged 21 and above will receive a one-time bonus of up to S$300 each. Described as “hongbao”, the bonus will be paid according to a person’s annual income. About 2.7 Singaporeans stand to benefit from the payout which will cost the government S$700 million.
Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat, while making the announcement in his Budget speech, said this “reflects the Government’s long-standing commitment to share the fruits of Singapore’s development with Singaporeans”.
The government is expecting an overall surplus of around S$10 billion for the 2017 financial year.
People with an annual income of S$28,000 or below will be eligible to receive S$300, while those with an income between S$28,001-S$100,000 will receive S$200. And people whose income exceeds S$1000,000 annually will receive S$100.
The remaining funds from the surplus will be spent on developing rail infrastructure and for other government-funded subsidies.
This was not the first time the Singaporean government gave out bonuses. In 2011, around 2.5 million people aged 21 and above received between S$100 and S$800, according to Channelnewsasia. Previously, the government paid similar dividends of between S$100 and S$400 in 2008.