Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong says higher taxes inevitable: reports

PM Lee says higher taxes are inevitable. Photo: Pixabay

It is a matter of time before taxes will be raised in Singapore, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, adding that the government will explain “well before the time comes” what the money will be used for.

Speaking at the People’s Action Party (PAP) convention on Sunday (19 November), Lee said areas of heavy spending included social services and healthcare.

Government spending on healthcare had reached S$10 billion in 2016, and this amount will rise as the population ages, Lee said in reference to Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat’s Budget speech in February.

Other costs included the expansion of the MRT network and the new Terminal 5 at Changi Airport.

“Just as our forefathers saved and invested to build what we, the current generation, are enjoying today, so too we must plant trees so that our sons and daughters, and their sons and daughters, can enjoy the shade,” said Lee.

According to economists who spoke to The Straits Times, the Goods and Services Tax could rise. In 2007, it was raised by two percentage points from 5 to 7 per cent.

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