SINGAPORE: More than S$4 billion in Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) payouts will be disbursed to employers from Jul 29.
More than 140,000 employers, with 1.9 million local employees, will receive the payouts to help retain their workers, the Ministry of Finance said on Sunday (Jul 19).
Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said with this July disbursement, more than S$15 billion would have been paid to employers to support wage costs for local employees.
“I urge all employers to do your utmost to retain your staff, and to take the opportunity to transform your operations and upskill your employees during this period,” he said in a Facebook post on Sunday.
Employers who have made mandatory Central Provident Fund (CPF) contributions for their local employees will be qualified to receive the JSS payouts.
READ: Singapore’s economic situation remains dire, with recovery likely to be ‘slow and uneven’: MAS
For the payment in July, employers will receive up to 75 per cent support for the first S$4,600 of wages paid to local employees in February and March this year.
Employers in the aviation and tourism sectors will receive 75 per cent support, while those in the food services, retail, arts and entertainment, land transport, as well as marine and offshore sectors will receive 50 per cent support.
Employers in all other sectors will receive 25 per cent support.
Employers will also receive 75 per cent support for wages paid in April 2020, during the “circuit breaker” period.
“Part of this wage support was disbursed as an advance in the previous payout in April to provide immediate cash flow support. As the amount disbursed was calculated based on October 2019 wages, necessary adjustments will be made in the upcoming payment in July, in accordance with actual wages paid in April 2020,” said MOF.
Eligible employers will be notified by post of their payout amount. They can also log in to myTax Portal to view the electronic copy of their letter.
Employers with PayNow Corporate or GIRO arrangements with Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) can expect to receive the JSS payouts earlier from Jul 29, while other employers will receive their cheques from Aug 4.
MOF encouraged employers to sign up for PayNow Corporate by Jul 24 to receive their payouts more easily.
“Employers are to ensure that mandatory CPF contributions made for their employees are accurate, so that they receive the right amounts of JSS payout,” the ministry added.
There are severe penalties for any attempt to abuse the JSS. Other than having their JSS payouts denied, those found guilty may face up to 10 years’ jail and a fine.
Businesses or individuals who wish to report any malpractices or potential abuses of the JSS may do so via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or online.
As part of the checks for JSS eligibility, a very small number of employers will receive letters from IRAS asking them to verify a self-review of their CPF contributions and to provide declarations or documents to substantiate their eligibility for JSS payouts.
“Their July 2020 payouts will be withheld for the time-being, pending the self-review and verifications by IRAS. Once the information is in order, they will receive the payout promptly,” said MOF.
First announced by Mr Heng in February’s Budget, the JSS is a wage subsidy programme to help companies retain and pay their workers as businesses take a hit from the impact of COVID-19.