SINGAPORE: The Goods and Services Tax will be increased to 7 percent, from the current 5 percent. This was announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in Parliament on Monday.
Mr Lee said more details would be given in next year's Budget Speech which has been scheduled for 15 February.
The Prime Minister made the announcement when responding to the issues raised by MPs over 4 days of debate - among them the widening income gap in Singapore as a result of globalisation.
Stressing that globalisation was here to stay, and Singaporeans would have to deal with its impact, Mr Lee said this was something that could strain the country's social compact, and this was why it was essential that there would be a whole set of measures to tilt playing field in favour of the lower income group.
Adding that the GST increase would help finance enhanced social safety nets to help this group, Mr Lee said it was better to raise the GST when the economy was doing well. - CNA /dt