SINGAPORE civil servants will get a year-end Annual Variable Component (AVC) of 0.65 month, with lower-wage officers getting an AVC of at least S$1,100, the Public Service Division (PSD) announced on Wednesday.
This compares to the year-end AVC of 0.8 month civil servants got last year, and the S$1,200 minimum lower-wage officers received.
Some 1,300 civil servants will benefit from the minimum AVC payment of $1,100 this year.
It cited an example of an officer earning a monthly salary of $1,500. This officer will get a year-end AVC of S$1,100. This is S$125 more than what he would get at 0.65 month of his monthly salary, which would have been S$975.
The year-end AVC payment (including the minimum payment) was decided in consultation with the public sector unions.
All civil servants will also get the Non-Pensionable Annual Allowance (NPAA) of one month, to be paid in December together with the AVC.
PSD noted that Singapore's economy grew by 1.9 per cent on a year-on-year basis in the third quarter of 2015, moderating slightly from the 2.0 per cent growth in the second quarter. This brought the gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the first three quarters of 2015 to 2.2 per cent on a year-on-year basis.
It also noted that the Ministry of Trade and Industry has forecast that the economy will grow by close to 2.0 per cent for the whole of 2015. Unemployment has remained low while total employment growth has continued to slow amidst weaker economic conditions. These were taken into consideration when considering the AVC.
"This signals the Government's continued commitment to help low wage workers," PSD said.
Earlier this year, PSD also announced that about 82,000 civil servants are set to receive a one-off bonus of S$500, as Singapore marks its Jubilee year. That was on top of a 0.5-month mid-year AVC payment in July. The one-off SG50 payment was "in recognition of their contribution towards nation building".
Responding to the latest announcement, the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) said it was pleased PSD paid close attention to the lower-wage officers by giving a higher amount than if the bonus is pegged to their monthly wages.
"Moving forward, in view of continued modest economic growth, the Labour Movement and affiliated unions will continue to work closely with our partners to ensure that workers are well taken care of,'' Cham Hui Fong, Assistant Secretary-General of NTUC, said.