Budget 2021: Aviation sector to get S$870 million, taxi & private hire car drivers S$133 million

These sectors include the aviation, the land transport, and the arts, culture, and sports sectors.

Darryl Laiu | February 16, 2021, 03:17 PM

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In his budget speech on Feb. 16, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said that he has set aside about S$1 billion of targeted financial support for sectors that continue to be adversely affected by Covid-19 in 2021.

Specifically, the sectors that will receive this support are the aviation sector, the land transport sector, and the arts and culture, and sports sector.

Aviation sector - S$870 million

Heng said that the government has set aside S$870 million targeted support for the aviation sector.

"International borders remain largely closed today. As of end-January this year, total passenger movements in Changi were only about 2 per cent of pre Covid-19 levels," said Heng. "To preserve core capabilities and Singapore's strong position built up over the years, I will provide targeted support and extend cost relief for the aviation sector."

Heng added later on in his speech some of the plans the sector has in mind to upgrade its capabilities and prepare for the recovery.

Heng said that the airport will be investing in their capabilities to secure public health through improving their on-arrival testing and biosafety systems.

This includes the Notarise and Verify system being developed by GovTech that aims to quickly verify the authenticity of digital Covid-19 test result certificates and vaccination records.

Land transport sector - S$133 million

Heng said that the government has set aside S$133 million for the previously announced Covid-19 Driver Relief Fund.

Heng said: "In our land transport sector, taxi and private hire car drivers have been hard hit by the pandemic, and will continue to need support in 2021."

Arts, culture and sports - S$45 million

Heng said that the government has set aside S$45 million for extensions and enhancements to the Arts and Culture Resilience Package and the Sport Resilience Package.

The purpose of these packages are to support business and self-employed persons in these sectors.

Heng said that he will enhance these packages to support capability development and sector transformation, and to encourage the community to deepen skills, go digital, and transform business models.

More details on these plans will be announced by the Minister of Culture, Community and Youth.

Top image adapted from MOF/Facebook and Changi Airport/Facebook.