- Finance Minister Gigaba announced a 1 percentage point VAT increase
- Meanwhile, Singapore had a budget surplus
- Its finance minister announced all citizens will get a one-off bonus of up to $227
While South Africans are facing a one percentage point VAT increase, Singapore's Finance Minister announced a bonus for all Singaporeans after a budget surplus.
Briefly.co.za learned that Singapore's budget came in with a surplus of $7.6billion. Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat therefore announced a one-off bonus to all citizens on 19 February.
According to citifmonline.com, citizens over the age of 21 will get varying amounts of up to $227. Minister Keat called it "hongbao," the Mandarin word for a gift reserved for special occasions.
While delivering the budget, Keat said:
This reflects the government’s long-standing commitment to share of the fruits of Singapore’s development with Singaporeans.
The bonus is in stark contrast to the situation in South Africa, where citizens will now have to fork out one extra percentage point in value added tax, from 14% to 15%.
Although Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba said the increase will not affect basic foodstuffs so as to cushion the poor, many South Africans have already decried it.
See some of the reactions on Twitter below.
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