In order to assist its citizens through the current pandemic, the Singapore government has been very supportive of businesses during this challenging time. In response to Covid-19, a vast number of support measures are put into place to help Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises to overcome financial difficulties and to boost their growth. In this article, we have gathered the most up-to-date and prominent government grants for SMEs to tap on.
1. Productivity Solution Grant (PSG)
One of the most popular grants is the Productivity Solution Grant (PSG) which is released by Enterprise Singapore to encourage enterprises to keep up with their efforts in digitalization and productivity increment. From 1 April 2020 to 31 December 2020, the maximum funding support level has been raised from 70 per cent to 80 per cent. Hence, businesses adopting Information Technology (IT) solutions and equipment can receive a grant up to 80 per cent of qualifying project costs. The scope of the grant generic solutions has also expanded, which includes Online collaboration tools, Virtual meeting and telephony tools, Queue management systems and Temperature screening solutions.
SMEs can be eligible for PSG if they meet the following criteria:
- Registered and incorporating in Singapore
- Have a minimum of 30% local shareholding AND
- Have a group annual sales turnover of no more than S$100 million OR
- Have a group employment size of no more than 200 workers
2. Enterprise Developement Grant. (EDG)
Another grant offered by Enterprise Singapore that SMEs can tap into is the Enterprise Development Grant (EDG). This grant is intended to support firms who desire to upgrade, innovate their business or venture overseas, which falls under the three pillars: Core Capabilities, Innovation and Productivity, Market Access.
- Core Capabilities: Projects under Core Capabilities help companies plan for growth and transformation by improving their company foundations.
- Innovation and Productivity: Projects under Innovation and Productivity help businesses that pursue new areas of growth or search for ways to enhance efficiency. These can involve in evaluating, redesigning workflow and processes or automating regular tasks.
- Market Access: Projects under Market Access assist Singapore companies who are seeking to expand their footprints by venturing overseas.
From 1 April 2020 to 31 December 2020, the maximum support level has been risen from 70 per cent to 80 per cent and for SMEs that are adversely affected by Covid-19, the grant can be up to 90 per cent of qualifying project costs on a case-by-case basis.
If you wish to know more about EDG’s eligibility criteria, you can check out our details here.
3. Market Readiness Assistance (MRA) Grant
The aim of the Market Readiness Assistance (MRA) Grant is to provide financial support to businesses which are willing and ready to expand overseas. From 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2023, eligible enterprises can receive a support fund of up to 70 per cent of eligible costs, capped at S$100,000 per company per new market. Each application of the MRA Grant is restricted to one project in a single overseas market.
Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will receive an international boost with the Market Readiness Assistance (MRA) grant to help take your business overseas.
- Overseas market promotion (capped at S$20,000)
- Overseas business development (capped at S$50,000)
- Overseas market set-up (capped at S$30,000)
4. Work–Life Grant
Work-Life Grant introduced by Workforce Singapore (WSG) provides SMEs funding assistance to help them implement and sustain flexible work arrangements (FWAs) for their workers to create work-life balance in the workplace. The FWAs will provide employees better control over their work schedules and increase job satisfaction. Any Singapore business, including societies and non-profit organizations, can be eligible for the Work-Life Grant.
The Work-Life Grant combines of 2 components FWA Incentive and Job Sharing Incentive. The funding amount for 2 categories are as following:
- FWA Incentive: FWA Incentive encourages enterprises to implement and sustain FWAs for their workers. The funding amount for this category can be up to $70,000 per company over 2 years
- Job Sharing Incentive: Job Sharing Incentive encourage enterprises to implement job sharing arrangements, for employees who request for it and have at least $3,600 as gross monthly salary before the job sharing arrangement. Each company can receive up to $35,000 over 2 years.
P-Max is a Place-and-Train Program aimed at helping SMEs better recruit, train, manage and retain newly-hired Professionals, Managers, Executives and Technicians (PMETs). It not only promotes the implementation of progressive human resource practice within SMEs, but also helps job-seeking PMETs find suitable job positions.
According to Workforce Singapore as of September 2020, eligible SMEs can enjoy a subsidy of 90 per cent of course fees with one-time Assistance Grants.
6. Career Trial
With Career Trial taking effect from 15 May 2019, employers can assess Singapore Citizen jobseekers’ job fit through a short-term trial prior to offering permanent employment. This program also help Singaporean jobseekers try out more jobs.
According to Workforce Singapore, salary support for employers can be up to 30 percent of monthly salary for up to 6 months, capped at $5,400 hire for full-time jobs and $2,700 per hire for part time jobs. The unemployed Singapore Citizens hired should be the ones who have been actively looking for jobs for 6 months or more.
Besides the above grants and initiatives, there are many more other programes to financially support SMEs in Singapore that companies can tap on such as SkillsFututre Enterprise Credit (SFEC), E-invoicing Registration Grant, etc. If you want to know more about Government Grants that are available to your business, do contact us for a free consultation.