Minister for National Development and Second Minister for Finance Lawrence Wong praised the Budget 2017 for spending “judiciously” and even said that the introduction of new and higher taxes is good for the next generation:
“New taxes or higher tax rates are not causes for alarm, but a call for Singaporeans to recognise that there are difficult things that we have to do together, rather than leave problems or difficulties for the next generation.”
Prices of water was raised 30% and a new tax for motorcycles was introduced in the Budget 2017 announced last Friday.
Minister Lawrence Wong however left out mentioning the lucrative spending on tax rebates for the rich, and the welfare amounting to S$1.4 billion given to businesses to help them offset manpower training costs. There is also no mention for a 6.9 million population target that plays the major factor behind the increased infrastructural needs. Instead, the Minister blame the ageing population for the increased expenditures:
“Expenditures rising because of healthcare, an ageing population as well as infrastructure needs, it is fair that the Government has to think of ways to raise revenue to balance the budget.”
The Wage Credit Scheme is one example where the government subsidizes businesses manpower costs by paying for 40% of the wage increases for workers.