Budget: Hong Kongers get billions, S’poreans get peanuts?


What a world of difference between the Hong Kong Budget and the Singapore Budget!

I refer to the article “Finance chief Paul Chan dishes out budget sweeteners worth billions to Hong Kong taxpayers” (South China morning post, Feb 28).

It states that ”


• GDP to grow 3 to 4 per cent this year

• Fiscal reserves expected to reach HK$1.092 trillion

• HK$138 billion fiscal surplus; 40 per cent to be spent on relief measures

• HK$50 billion in tax breaks; reductions on salaries and profits tax, rates

• HK$50 billion for innovation and technology development

• HK$2,000 one-off cash handout for poor students

• No tax waiver on electric cars but drivers get subsidised one-for-one replacement scheme, capped at HK$250,000

• One-off allowance to ‘N-nothings’ makes comeback”

In contrast, with our overall Budget surplus for FY2017 and FY2016 (revised) at $9.6 and $12 billion, respectively – Singaporeans are only getting a SG Bonus of $100 to $300, Usave rebate of $20 a year to offset the carbon tax, an increase in the annual bursary quantum for pre-university students from S$750 to S$900, annual Edusave contributions will be increased from S$200 to S$230 for each primary school student, and from S$240 to S$290 for each secondary school student, and an increase in the income eligibility criteria for the Edusave Merit Bursary (S$6,000 in gross monthly household income, or S$1,500 in gross monthly household per capita income) to S$6,900 and S$1,725 respectively.

Leong Sze Hian



About the Author

Leong Sze Hian has served as the president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), Hotel Mumbai (associate producer), invited to speak more than 200 times in about 40 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of 2 countries. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.