SDP Launch 10-Point Plan to lower Cost of Living

As one of the most, if not the most, expensive cities in the world, the rising cost of living in Singapore is a central concern for the people.

This was the SDP’s focus in this afternoon’s launch of our policy A Better Life For All: Lowering the Cost of Living In Singapore.

Despite PM Lee Hsien Loong’s to “work with you to solve problems like the cost of living” during the GE in 2015, the PAP and government increased, or intends to increase, prices on a slew of items including water, carpark, sugar, electricity, GST, etc.

This resulted in the government collecting nearly $20 billion in budget surpluses over the last three years.

What is particularly difficult to accept is that DPM Tharman Shanmugaratnam had declared in his Budget 2015 speech that all the increased spending were sufficiently funded until 2020.

To temper this rising cost of living, we proposed 10 measures:

1. Cut ministerial pay to fund assistance schemes for the poor

Ministerial salaries be reduced with the savings channelled to fund a scheme to provide financial support for the poorest of our poor. If the salaries are reduced according to our formula proposed in our policy paper Ethical salaries for a public-centred government, the PM’s salary would be reduced from the current $2.2 million a year to about $0.67 million a year.

The total savings from the pay reduction of the entire cabinet is conservatively estimated to be about $10 million to $12 million a year. This amount would go towards providing seed funding for for the elderly and poor.

PM Lee said in the 2015 GE: “Let us be prepared to buckle, work even sacrifice.” Our ministers must lead by example, not mere exhortations. Otherwise, they will lose even more of their fast-diminishing moral authority, and it would be difficult to govern effectively without the people’s respect and trust.

2. Raise income tax rate for the top 1 percent

In 2007, Singapore’s highest personal income tax rate was cut from 28 percent to 20 percent. The SDP proposes that the tax bracket for the top 1 percent earners be brought back up to 28 percent. Experts estimate that raising the top marginal income tax rate by 1 percentage point could result in the government’s tax revenue increasing by approximately $300 million. The additional revenue will go a long way to provide further financial relief for low-income families.

3. Ensure revenue neutral budgets

Rather than register huge surpluses every year, the government should collect in taxes only the amount that it needs. If it says, as DPM Tharman did in 2015, that the government has all its spending needs taken care of for the rest of the decade, then it should not raise taxes, fees and other charges during this period.

4. Scrap GST for essential items, raise GST for luxury goods

Basic food items as well as other basic necessities such as medical treatment and school supplies should not be subject to the GST. This is to protect poorer households from regressive taxation. To offset the reduction in revenue, the GST rate for luxury items should be increased to 10 percent or more. Presently, a poor family buying medicine or school textbooks is taxed at the same rate as a wealthy one buying a branded handbag worth thousands of dollars.

5. Legislate minimum wage

Legislation of minimum wage ensures that low-income workers are not exploited and that economic growth occurs in a fair and sustainable manner. Minimum wage will also help to reduce income inequality as well as reduce the demand for foreign workers.

6. Reinstate estate duty

The SDP proposes that the estate duty tax which was abolished in 2008 be brought back. Even PAP MPs are now calling for wealth and inheritance taxes to be reinstated.

7. Reduce healthcare costs

The commercialisation of medical care in Singapore as well as levying the GST on health-related expenses adds to the financial burden of the people. This is issue is discussed in greater detail in our healthcare policy titled National healthcare plan: Caring for all Singaporeans. Briefly, the SDP plan proposes replacing the Medisave, MediShield, and Medifund schemes with a single-payer system to reduce the burden of health care expenditure on our people. A main feature of our policy is the provision of universal care which ensures that the elderly poor and those without income are not left behind.

8. Lower HDB prices

HDB flats have become unaffordable for Singaporeans. The use of our CPF savings meant for retirement to fund HDB flats means that retirees will be left with little to live on in their twilight years. To ensure that there are adequate retirement savings, the SDP puts forward our proposal of the Non-Open Market (NOM) flats. This category of flats is sold at cost (minus land cost) and will not be allowed to be sold on the open market. The exclusion of the cost of land will effectively halve flat prices, thus allowing home-owners to save their CPF for retirement. For a detailed presentation of this idea, please read our policy paper Housing a nation: Sound policies for a secure future.

9. Return CPF savings

Withholding retirees’ savings through the Retirement Sum Scheme makes it immensely difficult for the elderly to survive. This scheme must be abolished and the funds returned to Singaporeans at the age of 55. An “opt-in” clause could be introduced for members who wish to have their CPF funds retained and returned in instalments.

10. Stop profligate public spending

The government must be held to strict account how it spends the people’s taxes. Lavish and unnecessary expenditure such as $880,000 rubbish centres and $1,500 bus-stop seats must cease. To do this, an effective opposition presence in Parliament, one that will meaningfully and competently examine records and question the ministers, is essential.

Our alternative ideas are guided by our belief that it is the people who should take the lead in driving the economy (as opposed to the current state-run affair through Temasek-owned companies) and who should have the predominant voice in how their wages are taxed and CPF savings used.

Under the present autocratic system, however, the people have little say in how their lives are run. Decisions on financial matters, especially regarding taxes, fees and CPF savings, are dictated by the elite few in the PAP.

With this alternative policy on the cost of living, the SDP aims to change such a political arrangement and return the power to the people and, in the process, make living in this country more affordable and less stressful – in other words, a better life for all.

You can read the full policy A Better Life For All: Keeping The Cost Of Living In Singapore Affordable here.

 

 

Sponsored Content

28 Responses to “SDP Launch 10-Point Plan to lower Cost of Living”

  • MarBowling:

    Singaprean should read this GREAT article by SDP! It touches the HEART of the citizen with regard to the cost of living, healthcare and social problems that are faced by Singaprean esp the poor, elderly folks! Period. Explain to parents, relatives and friends who have no access to this GREAT article. Definitely NOT Reading today Shits Times reporting that according to a fiacking LJ CB survey, 67% of Sinkaporean have TRUSTED the fiacking PAPIGS Coverment! Macham hinting that if GE is held NOW or SOON, the fiacking PAPigs will get 67% of the VOTES!

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Tatman:

    …only to be copied by the PAP.

    MarBowling:
    Singaprean should read this GREAT article by SDP! It touches the HEART of the citizen with regard to the cost of living, healthcare and social problems that are faced by Singaprean esp the poor, elderly folks! Period. Explain to parents, relatives and friends who have no access to this GREAT article. Definitely NOT Reading today Shits Times reporting that according to a fiacking LJ CB survey, 67% of Sinkaporean have TRUSTED the fiacking PAPIGS Coverment! Macham hinting that if GE is held NOW or SOON, the fiacking PAPigs will get 67% of the VOTES!

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • guru:

    I m with SDP, VTO!

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Regime change is the solution:

    Brillant move by SDP. By coming up with a 10-point plan it is difficult for PAP to propose a similar solution and not be labeled as copycats and stupid.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • giveout 1drumstick takeback?:

    today NTUC released a report that they are slashing by 20% basic home n food necessities, like some foods, oil, soaps etc.
    after GE all prices will up by 30% or more.
    can see clearly PAPs are oredy giving out pre GE feel good lollies.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Flexible HDB lease:

    HDB flat should have flexible lease to everybodies. Singaporean should have priority to the lease and charge at a substantially lower rate. When these type of flexible leasing system is clear, Singaporean will have a clear thinking that leasing is actually renting in disguise.
    Singaporean will think carefully whether they wanted to spent money on renovating and furnishing their flat. I believe that many Singaporeans are realistic and only spend the minimum. Money saved could help them for retirement or other venture.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • RDB:

    From article:

    “Despite PM Lee Hsien Loong’s to “work with you to solve problems like the cost of living” during the GE in 2015, the PAP and government increased, or intends to increase, prices on a slew of items including water, carpark, sugar, electricity, GST, etc.

    This resulted in the government collecting nearly $20 billion in budget surpluses over the last three years.

    What is particularly difficult to accept is that DPM Tharman Shanmugaratnam had declared in his Budget 2015 speech that all the increased spending were sufficiently funded until 2020.”

    Now that SDP has said it, expect pap to do it??? No they won’t as 9t will make them look utterly stupid. Won’t it meh!

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • clown pap liars:

    we agree with all 10 points by SDP.

    we vote SDP PSP WP JP any party as long as not clown pap.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • LIONS:

    Need we say more,*OUR* SDP.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • What are they able to deliver?:

    Everybody suffers from the high cost of living caused by the PAP’s policies and they continue to pay themselves the highest salaries in the world that run into millions if you include their absurd bonuses too.

    What have they been able to deliver?

    What they have been able to deliver is to showcase Singapore to the world to buy glory for themselves using our money, by collecting taxes and charging exhorbitant prices for our HDB flats and not spending them on the citizens, only on themselves and their pet projects.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Anyone with money can showcase:

    What are they able to deliver?:

    What they have been able to deliver is to showcase Singapore to the world to buy glory for themselves using our money, by collecting taxes and charging exhorbitant prices for our HDB flats and not spending them on the citizens, only on themselves and their pet projects.

    Anyone with money can showcase themselves. Dubai, Qatar, Pudong, etc.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Spurm:

    Now they are gonna copy your ideas.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • 鸟龙的人:

    这才是管理国家 为民造福
    那群白衣死鬼仔 败家仔
    国家的$都被牠们的薪水和花红拿光了

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • guru:

    Fully Agree. FANTASTIC .

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • True facts:

    All these can only happen if papigs are voted out.

    Time for change la.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Regime change is the solution:

    I expect many of SDP’s ideas will be copied by PAP. They have done it so many times before.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Who to Blame:

    SDP, you may want to include one more item; drop commercial rental rate, so that businesses can survive.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Boh Kia See:

    I am afraid this particular idea will not be copied by the PAP–at least a large part of it.

    Primarily because the Ministers are not willing to cut their pay rates. Apart from their publicly known pay rates, some of them are paid more because of their different roles or titles they hold. So, a Minister is paid Ministerial salary, but if he is also a second Minister or a Minister of State in another Department he would get that grade’s pay as well. On top of that, there are bonuses. That is the face of greed at the very top.

    So there is no chance of this element being copied. As I mentioned before, it is not the lack of alternatives but the lack of focus on the country and the citizens. It is all about the PAP and their gravy train.

    It is also the reason that the PAP has to be removed totally for the country to begin the first steps towards recovery.

    VTO—for a better Singapore.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Elderlies factor:

    Pro PAP people would likely say, no lah, your ideas won’t work . Presenting the alternatives alone is not enough. You need get them to buy in.

    But they are brainwashed beyond repair

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Gan Boh Yong:

    Being kiasu, I think they will karang kabok copy all the alternative policies just before the GE.
    The many apathetic peasants will never know who copied who.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • fly me to the moon:

    SDP is totally under-rated as PAP is over-hyped?

    why sgs so stupid lah?

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Bobo:

    I casted my one and only virgin vote to People’s Action Party when I was 21 yo. I was happy to vote for PAP in the old days. Life was getting tough when GCT was PM. They started price hikes in every single hole they could drill and started replacing our job with FTs. Salary increment became non negotiable. A lot of Singaporeans became jobless after being lay-off. Suicide and divorce cases are high. Life became tougher when LHL became PM and worst after his second marriage. Ask ourselves. Do we still want a party againt people?

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Tan Hong Yi:

    fly me to the moon:
    SDP is totally under-rated as PAP is over-hyped?

    why sgs so stupid lah?

    The solutions come from the people and not just the pap.
    You are over rating them.
    Some like you think that good food is alao because of the pap. When weather good, they thank the pap also. When they strike 4d they say wow, thanks to pap without whom he will not strike 4d.
    Some thank pap for a great movie they watched. But they never blame the pap for policy failures. How stupid can a stupid be?

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • NTUC Fairprice not cheap:

    NTUC Fairprice is a joke. Supposed to make things cheap for the working class, but products are over-priced. Cut prices still more expensive than Sheng Siong. I’ll buy from Sheng Siong anytime.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Keep it simple:

    There is only one way to lower the cost of living. REGIME CHANGE.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • tom thum:

    SDP is the most pro-active oppo party.

    WP seems like lambs only.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Estate Duty 2008 vvsignificant:

    [1] The removal of estate duty in 2008 was a v v significant move. To re instate estate duty must take the significance into consideration or it will be the most injustice done for SDP regime if it does make the goal they aspire for long. That will be a start of injustice as one injustice begets another n it goes on as what it has get pap to the pinnacle s of greed, arrogance n brainless ways of self gratifications, glorification n egoistic evil pursuits inevitably leading to lies dressed as real news n mutual intolerance for power n citizens. If SDP succeeds, its success is intimately hinged on injustice n polanpa shielding n sugar cloaking of greed n egoism as wisdom n populism. So if estate duty is reinstated, it should date back to the time it is revoked as if it has never be revoked at all. The dating back syndrome has been used by PAP on many of its policy n for estate duty to be restated dating back to the time when it was revoked will be welcome by the citizenry, rich or poor n it will surely be hailed as the first sign of restoration of justice n more to follow. There may be need to do a detailed look into the wealth accumulation n the legal procedure of vetting their credibility. Who know most taxes with interests can be recovered.

    [2] As for minister salary reduction, the legality of paying millions to minister plus president should be looked into. The mandate to govern does not include legalizing for personal gains. If the increase has been rectified by the citizenry in a National Referendum, then the unethical humongous salary skybleap will not carry the stigma of abuse of power or mandate to govern for self benefits n gains. The response of former Canadian political leader, Mr Trudeau Sr to LKY’s kind advice to follow what he (LKY) has gotten for hiimself n his ministers on millions $ salary shows what would really happened in a truly democratic nation with sufficient checks n balances n politicians placing nation n citizens before party n self. His response was that if he proposed that in the Parliament he will be booed out not just by the opposition but his own party n the Media with the entire mation may be up in arms to get rid of him. This showed what GCT has done is an abuse of power n thus the entire pay structure is illegal n recoverable by the Nation!

    This is what restoration of Justice really implies. Not only salary but benefits n bonuses which r hard to trace but not impossible with the psychological understanding of the basic nature of bootlickers, polanpa or fart worms.

    This is what citizens r looking for in a new regime. Chinese scholars specialising in Chinese Dynasty will know the intricacy of investgative n judicial outcome of interplay of power abuse n corruption well exemplified by He sen of Qianlong…

    GD Star Rating
    loading...
  • Sad situation:

    The high cost of living is a sad situation for many.
    Broken dream and a broken promise for a Swiss standard of living …
    Instead many are struggling to survive in this costly Singapore.

    GD Star Rating
    loading...

Leave a Reply

 characters available

Member Services
Self-SupportMembers Login
Sponsored Advertisement

Search On TR Emeritus
Sponsored Advertisement

Most Recent Comments
  • NotMyProblem: @Lim Tean; Let’s face it, there are people who love to be slave. Slaves do not need to think....
  • DoYouWantTheTruth...: ..and nothing but the truth? Then I think in the future, there will be a lot of complaints and...
  • Bbc: Nus and police appear to be sexist for treating peeping criminals against women so lightly.
  • Bapak: Now we understand why so many youngsters have to consult IMH. They are so confused taking completely naked pix...
  • No Dafts or Dogs Allowed: The fire had already started long ago. Problem is 70% daft frogs are still sitting on it....
  • Flabbergasted: what happened to our champion of rights, san-mu-kan ? so quiet over this episode? say something lah,...
  • patriot of TUMASIK: Cry for Thatman: Sorry, I disagree (btw, I didn’t thumb you down, apparently someone...
  • Great Asia: Those people listed are all angmoh worshipping Bananas. They are just leftist or Rightist Bananas! All...
  • AristoCATs cant Handle d Truth: > SG ” is not ready for a minority PM” - It is Fake News - Just like...
  • Great Asia: Democracy, Equality, Justice, Peace & Progress.?!!!! Democracy = The Bible = Christianity = A...
  • patriot of TUMASIK: FAKE all the WAY…with Fake 1st World status leading The WAY!!! and FAKE is a four letter...
Announcements
Advertisements
Visitors Statistic
Latest Statistic
Advertisements