Singapore to extend local jobs support scheme

Out-Law News | 29 Sep 2021 | 12:49 am | 1 min. read

Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM) will extend its local job support scheme by six months, to March 2022.

Known as the Jobs Growth Incentive (JGI), the scheme has supported the hiring of nearly 400,000 local workers by 58,000 firms as of May 2021, according to official MOM figures.

The qualifying window for phase 3 of the JGI will be extended until March 2022 to help recovery in an improving labour market and support employers in expanding their local hiring. However, wage support available under the scheme will be lowered.

From October, eligible employers will receive 15% of the first S$5,000 (US$3,700) gross earned per month by new employees under 40 for up to six months, with a total maximum subsidy per employee of S$4,500.

For new employees who are over 40, people with disabilities and ex-offenders, the wage support will be 50% of the first S$6,000 gross earned per month for a maximum 12 months, with a total maximum subsidy of S$36,000 for each employee.

Previously, the Singapore government paid 25% of the first S$5,000 of gross monthly wages of all new local hires under 40 for up to 12 months. Employers received 50% of the first S$6,000 paid to new older employees, people with disabilities and ex-offenders for up to 18 months.

Mayumi Soh of Pinsent Masons MPillay, the Singapore joint law venture between MPillay and Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind Out-Law, said: “The Manpower minister has stressed that this is an extraordinary measure, and is not a permanent scheme. He has encouraged employers who have growth plans to accelerate and bring forward their hiring of locals.”

The JGI was introduced in August 2020 to support employers to expand local hiring. To qualify for JGI, there must be an increase in the employer’s overall local workforce size and an increase in the share of the employer’s local workforce earning S$1,400 or more per month, compared to the period before the scheme, or ‘qualifying window’.