Budget 2024: Ensuring Endowment Funds are Not Overfunded

Chairman,

The Progress Singapore Party (PSP) welcomes the Government’s efforts to support the retirement and healthcare needs of younger seniors through the Majulah Package. As usual, the Government has set aside money from the current-year Budget to fund the full cost of the package upfront. This time, the Government has set aside $7.5 billion and the projected cost of the package is $8.2 billion. But how do we know whether we have set aside too much?

 Back when the Merdeka Generation Fund was set up in May 2019, Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong told the House that the Government would set aside $6.1 billion and that the projected cost of the Package is over $8 billion. But on page 78 of the Government Financial Statements released in July 2023, there is now a note that says, “The estimated liabilities under the Merdeka Generation Fund as at 31 March 2023 are $6,021,419,859.64.” Even after adding the total net drawdown of about $400 million since 2019, the total cost of the Package now does not seem to add up to $8 billion.

 Can the Deputy Prime Minister explain whether this means that too much money was initially set aside when the Merdeka Generation Fund was set up? If yes, what will happen to the excess funds?

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