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Singapore Budget 2018: Employers of multiple foreign domestic workers to pay higher levy


THE government will from next year raise the foreign domestic worker (FDW) levy for those who hire more than one FDW, Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat said on Monday. Those who have no kids, or have no elderly and family with disabilities to support, will also have to foot a higher FDW bill.

Families that require help in caring for young children, the elderly, or family members with disabilities can continue to enjoy the monthly concessionary levy rate of S$60. The government will also raise the qualifying age for the levy concession under the aged persons scheme to 67 from 65 years.

Employers who do not qualify for the levy concession or who employ multiple FDWs will see their bill go up. For the first and second FDW employed without levy concession, the monthly levy will be raised from S$265 today, to S$300 and S$450 respectively.

"We must ensure that FDW demand is commensurate with need and avoid an over-dependency on FDWs," said Mr Heng. Over the last 10 years, the number of FDWs in Singapore has increased by about 40 per cent, to 240,000 in 2017.

These changes will take effect from April 1, 2019.

The Ministry of Manpower is also piloting a scheme to help meet demand for part-time household services, said Mr Heng.

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