The Online Citizen

The relentless rising cost of living in Singapore

The relentless rising cost of living in Singapore
October 28
06:00 2010

In 2009, Mercer ranked Singapore as the 10th costliest countries in the world (see here).

The following is a collated list of price increases which TOC could find – from various news reports, blogs, websites, forums, etc – since Jan 2006 to the present.

If we have left out any, please do let us know. If you have observed any price hikes around your neighbourhood (or anywhere else) please let us know also.

We can be reached at theonlinecitizen@gmail.com

The list may not be comprehensive and any clarification is welcome.


2006

Jan 9: Pump prices at all 29 Caltex stations will go up from 11pm on Monday night. Prices will go up by four cents per litre for all three grades. (link)

Feb 13: Polytechnics and ITE increase fees by $50 and $10 respectively (link) (link)

Feb 14: NTU, NUS to raise tuition fees by 3% from next academic year. Tuition fees at both the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University will go up by S$180 for the next academic year. This 3 percent increase comes on the heels of a 5 percent hike just last year. (link)

Mar 6: Expect annual tuition fee increases. Hostel fees will also go up by 10% to 11% from next academic year. (NTU) (link)

Mar 9: Retail pump prices for Synergy petrol and diesel at all Esso and Mobil service stations in Singapore were increased by 6 cents a litre. (link) (link)

June 1: NTUC Car Co-Op raises fuel surcharge: We cannot continue subsidizing the fuel price increase in the long run without compromising the quality of service. Thus, the management has decided to implement a fuel surcharge of $0.30 for every 10km free with effect from 1 June 2006. (link)

June 27: Electricity tariff to go up next quarter. Domestic users, for example, will have to pay 21.15 cents for every kWH of electricity, up from 20.49 cents currently. (link)

July 10: Comfort Delgro raises taxi fares. Besides raising the flag down fare and the peak hour surcharge from $1 to $2, ComfortDelgro is also making distance-related adjustment. (link) (link)

July: Taxi companies raise fares. (link) (link)

July 17: SMRT hikes taxi fares. (link)

Aug: SMRT, SBS apply for fare hike. (link)

Aug: NUS hikes tuition fees by between $180, $220, and $510, depending on faculty. (link)

Aug: ERP rates to go up at six gantries, mainly at CTE. (link)

Oct: Public Transport Council approves 1.7% fare increase for bus and trains. Adult EZ-link fares for buses and trains will increase by 1 to 3 cents, which amounts to an overall fare hike of 1.7 percent. (link)

Nov: SingPost revises postage rate. (link)

Nov 12: Rates for HDB rental flats pegged to income. (link)

Dec: Govt spells out fees to be frozen. (link)

2006: Loan sharks cases rise by 19%, to 10, 221 cases. (link)

2006: A total of 419 people committed suicide in 2006, up from 346 in 2003. The suicide rate per 100,000 residents – a sobering indicator in population statistics – is also on the upswing, growing from 9.3 in 2003 to 10.3 in 2006, figures from the Registry of Births and Deaths reveal. It is the fourth straight rise in as many years. (ST, Aug 13, 2007) (link)

2006: Islandwide, home rentals climbed 10 per cent in 2006. (ST, Aug 6, 2007) (link)

2006: At Alexandra Hospital, A&E charges went up from $55 to $60, as did C-class ward charges — from $21 to $23 — and subsidised specialist outpatient clinic consultation rates, from $18 to $20. (link)


2007

Jan: All diesel-driven vehicles to undergo smoke test. (link)

Jan: NUH’s A&E fee raised from $70 to $80. (link)

Jan: Skilled Foreign workers levy raised by $50, from $100 to $150, for all sectors. (link) (link)

Jan 26: SMU Law Course to cost more, NUS says it may increase fees too. (link)

Feb: KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital hikes ward treatment fees. (link)

Feb 14: Tax penalties from GST audits could increase. With the hike in Goods and Services Tax (GST) by two percentage points, tax analysts said tax penalties arising from businesses making mistakes in GST audits may also increase. (link)

Feb 25: Sunny Cove: Fees to Pulau Hantu Raised – As of 24th February 2007 (Saturday), the operator had increased the price for the chartering of boat to local water. With the price hike, all courses conducted at local water will be subjected to the increase from 25th February 2007 (Sunday) onwards. (link)

Feb 25: Eldershield premiums to go up by year’s end. (link)

April 1: Singapore Medical Association withdraws guidelines on fees. Doctors now have more flexibility to adjust their fees, following a decision by the Singapore Medical Association (SMA) to withdraw its guidelines on fees, as of 1 April. (link)

April 1: URA increase fees for Housing Developers’s Licence – from between $500 to $8,000. (link)

April 2: NUS revise car park charges. (link)

April 8: Means testing for hospital admission to start within a year. Subsidised patients that stay more than five days in a public hospital can expect some questions about their income. (link) (link)

April 11: Ikea to start charging customers for plastic bags. (ST, 11 April, 2007)

April 25: The Singapore American School increased tuition fees by between $425 and $1,000. (link)

April: Within hours of each other, the four petrol companies in Singapore – First Shell, then Singapore Petroleum Company (SPC), ExxonMobil and lastly Chevron – each revised its prices. The retail price of petrol and diesel rose by 10 cents. (Electric New Paper) (link) (link)

May 12: Inflation heads for a higher plane. For now, the major public concern is a rise in the Goods and Services Tax (GST) from 5% to 7% in July, which is likely to exacerbate the series of worrying price increases over the past year. (Littlespeck)

May 14: NUH increase ward charges for B2 and C-class wards by $2, increases of 4 and 8 per cent. (link)

May 23: DBS raises its e-transaction fee for initial public offering (IPO) applications. Retail investors who applied for IPO shares launched on or after that date, through the local bank’s ATMs and Internet banking, were surprised that they now have to pay $2. (link)

May 29: New fee hikes at public hospitals and polyclinics. A NEW round of fee hikes is underway at most public hospitals and some polyclinics. Subsidised patients at four public hospitals will now pay $24 or $25 for every visit to a specialist clinic, up from about $21. All 18 polyclinics, which used to charge a standard consultation fee of $8 for adults, now charge anything from $8-$8.80. (link) (link) (link)

May: From milk to Milo, cooking oil to coffee, canned foods, processed foods, wheat products and more, prices have been rising recently at supermarkets and hypermarts here. (link) (link) (link)

June 1: Prices of milk go up. The price increase for condensed milk ranged from $0.10 to $0.50, which means the prices for some brands of condensed milk have gone up by nearly 45 per cent. The price increase for evaporated milk ranged from $0.15 to $0.47, marking a percentage increase of between 18 per cent to 48 per cent. (link) (link)

June 4: Online hosiery shop increases price. There will be a overall price increase on 4th June 2007 for all brands due to increased cost of yarns and cost of shipping. (link)

June 6: Even before the Nets fee hike kicks in, a shoe shop in Parkway Parade has already started charging customers extra to cover the increase. (link)

June 7: Wholesale price of ducks goes up. The wholesale price of ducks has increased by 20 cents a kilogram. (link)

June 7: Eggs price increase. Eggs now cost between 17 cents and 18 cents each. (link)

June 29: Rental space rents rise. Islandwide, rents at Grade A malls have moved up by between 5-7 per cent in the first half of this year and could increase by another 5-6 per cent by end-2007, analysts said. (Business Times, June 29, 2007) (link)

June 29: Fees up by 14% on average at NUS. Two days before the higher 7-per-cent GST kicked in on July 1, prospective students of the continuing education arm of the National University of Singapore (NUS) received news that fees for many courses had gone up — by an average 14 per cent. (link)

July 1st: GST increased from 5% to 7%. (link) (link)

July 1st: THE Singapore Petroleum Company (SPC) and market leader ExxonMobil became the first companies to raise pump prices at their petrol stations following the GST hike. The two companies increased prices across the board for their three grades of petrol and diesel by 0.23 cents to 0.33 cents per litre from 7am. Caltex will be increasing its pump prices on Monday. (ST, July 1, 2007) (link) (link)

July 1st: NETS announced a price hike for its Electronic Funds Transfer Point-of-Sale (EFTPOS) and CashCard Services to between 1.5% and 1.8%. (link) (link)

July 1st: Pasir Ris – Punggol Town Council revise penalties for late payment of S&C charges to 2% and absorb 7% GST. (2004 rates) (2007 rates)

July 1st: Cigarette prices up as bar ban kicks in. Tobacco companies raised the prices of popular brands by an average of 40 cents. This brought the price of a 20-stick pack of Marlboro or Dunhill cigarettes, for example, to $11.60. (AsiaOne)

July 3: Resale price index for HDB flats rise 2.9% from 3 months before. (link)

July 4: The Committee Against GST Profiteering (CAP) has found price changes to be generally moderate since the announcement of the GST increase in November 2006. (link)

July 10: Changi General Hospital increases A&E charges. Following in the wake of earlier hikes by the National University Hospital and Alexandra Hospital, CGH this month increased its A&E attendance fee by $10 — or 15 per cent — to $75. For the B2 and C-class wards, the daily treatment fee went up by $1, representing a 6-to-10-per-cent increment. The daily ward charge for B2 wards also rose by $1, or 2 per cent. (link)

July 11: Starhub raise prices for cable tv packages. SCV subscribers pay $4 more across the board. (link) (link) (link)

July 11: The Committee Against GST Profiteering has received 33 complaints in the past six months about price increases, all dealing with food items. About 10 cases involve chain businesses. (ST, July 11, 2007) (link)

July 15: Electricity tariffs to be raised by almost 9% for July to September. (link)

July 18: Govt raises development charge from 50% to 70% for new building projects from 50 per cent to 70 per cent of the increase in value of the land. (link) (link)

July 21: HDB rents at 10-year high. For the first time in recent memory, monthly rents for some HDB flats have pushed northwards of $2,000 in leases signed in the last couple of months. (ST, 21 July 2007) (link)

July 25: Hospital bills up 10% to 30% across all ward classes. (link)

July: July inflation hits 2.6%, highest in over 12 years. (link)

July (CPI): Housing costs increased 4.9 per cent because of higher housing maintenance charges, electricity tariffs and rented accommodation costs. (ST, Aug 23, 2007) (link)

July (CPI): Food prices went up by 1.4 per cent, mainly due to dearer cooked food, fresh fish, fruits, vegetables and milk powder. (link)

July (CPI): Transport and communication prices moved up by 1 per cent, reflecting mainly dearer petrol and higher car prices. (link)

July (CPI): The index for education and stationery rose by 2.1 per cent as a result of higher fees at commercial institutions and universities. (link)

July (CPI): Prices of clothing and footwear increased by 3.9 per cent. (link)

July (CPI): Health care cost rose by 2.2 per cent on account of dearer chinese herbs and higher charges for general medical consultation and dental treatment. (link)

Aug 2: SBS, SMRT seeking bus, train fare increases. If approved, transport fares could rise by up to three cents from October. (link)

Aug 2: Singapore Airlines raises fuel surcharge – from between US$2, US$5 and US$9. (link)

Aug 6: ERP rates at Orchard, YMCA and Fort Canning Tunnel to go up. From August 6, cars passing the Orchard, YMCA and Fort Canning Tunnel gantries will be charged an additional $0.50. That makes it $1 per entry. Rates for motorcycles will also double to $0.50. Goods vehicles and small buses will now be charged $1.50. Heavy goods vehicles and big buses will be charged $2. (link)

Aug 7: Student made to pay adult fare. (link)

Aug 7: Cost of living in S’pore getting higher compared to neighbours. Singapore retains its 9th position out of 41 Asian locations as the most costly city. (CNA)

Aug 7: Car insurance premiums likely to increase. Higher premium rates for car insurance look almost certain, after the motor sector suffered a second consecutive quarter of losses. Rises could be between 5 and 10 per cent, according to one insurer, as the industry battles higher claims. (AsiaOne, ST, Aug 7, 2007)

Aug 8: 17% hike in Delifrance’s tuna croissant sandwich, from $5.05 to $5.90. (link)

Aug 10: Change of supplier sees spike in price of medicine. A 80ml bottle of Minoxi 5 from Trima Pharmaceutical used to cost $38.50. This time round, the price was $45.50 for a 60ml bottle. Going by volume, the price increase was a hefty 57.6 per cent. (ST Forum, Aug 10, 2007) (link)

Aug 13: Up to 30% levy imposed on hotel room revenues during F1 race. The Trade and Industry Ministry (MTI) has decided a levy of 30 per cent for hotels on the trackside, and 20 per cent for others. (link)

Aug 23: More ERP gantries, extended hours. (link) (link)

Aug 24: By Aug 24, the Committee Against GST Profiteering had received 115 complaints on alleged GST profiteering. In the first two weeks of July, after the GST increase came into effect, 49 complaints were received, surpassing the 30 complaints received in May. (ST, Aug 29, 2007)

Aug 27: Singapore raises 2007 inflation forecast to 1-2 per cent. Singapore‘s central bank confirmed an apparent off-the-cuff remark by Trade and Industry Minister Lim Hng Kiang in parliament that inflation would come in at 1-2 percent this year, above the government’s previous forecast of 0.5-1.5 percent. (Reuters)

Aug 29: Middle-aged suicide rate up. In 2003, there were 14 suicides (of men in their 40s and 50s) per 100,000. In 2006, it went up to 19 per 100,000. For women, there were 8 per 100,000. In 2006, it went up to 13 per 100,000. (TODAY, Aug 29, 2007) (link)

Aug 29: Storage boom as rents rise. Companies which provide self-storage facilities are reporting a rise in rentals by foreigners as rising rental prices force more of them to downsize. (The Electric New Paper, Aug 29, 2007) (link)

Aug 31: Government raises property development charges. For non-landed residential use, the charge was raised by an average of 58 percent with prime areas like Cantonment Road seeing the biggest jump of 112 percent. Areas seeing the highest increase (of over 100 percent) include Telok Ayer, Maxwell, Shenton, Anson and South Bridge Road. (CNA)

Sept 1st: New dog licensing rules. To discourage dog owners from keeping unlicensed dogs, allowing their dogs to stray or not muzzling dogs of breeds2 that are required to be muzzled in a public place (eg, the Rottweiller or Mastiff); the maximum fine for such offences has been raised from $500 to $5,000. (link)

Sept 5: Esso won’t go public on fuel price changes. IF YOU are an Esso customer, you will not know if the price of your fuel has changed until you drive right up to a pump. ExxonMobil – the biggest player here with 74 out of the total of about 200 stations – has adopted a new policy against revealing changes in pump prices to the media. Neither does it display prices at station entrances. (Straits Times, Sept 5, 2007)

Sept 11: Adult EZ-link fares for buses upped from October. From 1 October, adult EZ-link fares for buses will increase by between one and two cents. But there will be no increase for train fares. (CNA)

Sept 12: Special needs school raise fees by 100%. I was shocked to receive a letter in July stating that school fees would increase by 100 per cent from this month. No other institution – even private schools – operates in this manner by increasing its fees by 100 per cent. (Letter to ST forum)

Sept 13: Employers to buy medical insurance for foreign workers. From January next year (2008), employers will have to buy and maintain insurance for the medical expenses of all foreign workers on Work Permit or S Pass. (CNA)

Sept 25: Electricity tariffs to go up because of higher oil prices. Barely 2 months after the increase of 9% in July, electricity tariffs will again go up later this year because of higher oil prices. SP Services said electricity tariffs will be raised by an average of 0.86 cent, or 4.29 percent, per kilowatt-hour, for the three months from October to December. (CNA)

Sept 25: Cosmetics costing more? Taking a hit from the Goods and Services Tax hike, prices of consumer products in Singapore grew at a pace not seen since 1994. (TODAY)

Sept 27: Gardenia loaf of bread cost 5% more in three months. “Yesterday we found out that its price has soared to $2. If you work that out against the original $1.90, it means that the total price increased is 5.3 per cent in three months.” (Letter to ST forum page.)

Sept 29: Why higher fees for vacant flat? “MY LATE grandfather, who was the sole owner and occupier of a three-room HDB flat, had been paying $38 a month in conservancy fees to the town council. His estate now has to pay $55 a month (a 45 per cent increase) for the vacant flat, the reason being that the $38 concessionary charge no longer applies as it is now unoccupied.” (Letter to ST Forum Page)(link)

Sept: Singapore Indian Fine Arts Society to increase fees from between $5 to $10 due to the society becoming a GST-registered entity. (link)

Oct: Starhub Cable TV sports channels subscribers pay $10 more. (link)

Oct 1: Public transport fare increase takes effect.

Oct 1: Private home prices in Q3 up by 8%: URA flash estimate. The prices of private residential property in Singapore increased by eight per cent in the third quarter of this year.. (CNA)

Oct 1: HDB resale prices up by 6.5% in Q3: HDB’s flash estimate. Public housing resale prices went up by 6.5 percent in the third quarter of this year, compared to the previous three months. (CNA)

Oct 1: Petrol, diesel price up 3-5 cents. At 10am, Caltex increased its petrol and diesel prices by 3 cents a litre, while Shell upped its rates by 5 cents a litre. By 3pm, Singapore Petroleum Co followed suit by raising its pump rates by 5 cents a litre. The increase is the fifth upward revision since July, as crude oil prices hover at record levels above US$80 a barrel. (AsiaOne)

Oct 1: Hotel room rates expected to go up by 25% in Q4. Hotel room rates in Singapore in the fourth quarter are expected to be 25 per cent higher than that of last year, according to industry players. (CNA)

Oct 3: The price of chickens has risen by 20 to 50 per cent here since last week, caused by the wholesale price hike from Malaysia, among the factors, according to media reports. (Bernama)

Oct 4: Queensway Shopping Centre, Sim Lim Square and sky-high rentals in Singapore. As the leases are expiring about now, get ready for a radical change in Sim Lim Square, the highestrentals for the shops selling the lowest margin products ever. (C Net Asia)

Oct 19: SIA ups fuel surcharge by between $3 and $9. The new charges, which are between $3 and nearly $9 more than the current surcharges, will apply to tickets issued from Oct 24 and to both SIA and SilkAir flights. (TODAY)

Oct 20: Price of flour up 30%. The price of flour has increased again, but this time it has gone up by thirty percent. This is the biggest ever hike, according to industry watchers. From January, it will cost 20 cents more to buy a loaf of bread. (CNA)

Oct 22: Caltex petrol, diesel prices up. AMERICAN oil company Chevron raised pump prices of its Caltex petrol and diesel by five cents a litre on Monday – the sixth increase since July and the second in about a fortnight. The others – Shell, ExxonMobil and Singapore Petroleum – are likely to do likewise in the coming days. Chevron’s move brings its pump prices to record levels. (Straits Times)

Oct 26: Private home prices up 8.3% in Q3. Singapore private home prices rose 8.3 percent between July and September to their highest level in a decade. (Asia One)

Oct 27: Prices of HDB resale flats keep accelerating. ‘As at end-September, the HDB resale price index has increased by about 11 per cent since the start of the year,’ the HDB said. For five-room flats, the median resale price in Queenstown is the highest at $603,000, followed by Marine Parade at $560,000 and Bukit Merah at $530,000. (Straits Times)

Oct 28: Singapore raises noodle prices. Starting Nov. 1, the price of noodles in Singapore will increase 20 percent to 30 per cent, the Singapore Noodles Manufacturers’ Association announced on Sunday. (AHN News)

Oct 30: ERP rates going up again for third time this year. Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) rates are going up again for the third time this year. There will also be new gantries erected. From November 5, motorists will pay $3.50 from 7:30am to 8:00am. The amount charged goes up to $5.00 between 8:30am and 9:00am. This is a $1.50 increase in the 8:30am to 9:00am period since February this year. (CNA)

Oct 30: 100 bakeries to raise bread prices by up to 20%. OVER 100 bakeries have indicated that they will be raising bread prices by up to 20 per cent, following a jump in flour prices. (Straits Times)

Nov 2: Expect steep hikes in tyre, wheel and battery prices. BESIDES record fuel prices and higher Electronic Road Pricing rates, motorists must prepare to pay more for batteries, tyres and wheels. The Singapore Motor Tyre Dealers Association is preparing to announce sizeable price hikes, with battery prices going up by as much as 50 to 70 per cent. Tyre prices will go up by 20 to 30 per cent, and wheels by 10 to 20 per cent, the association’s assistant secretary, Mr Robert Tng, told The Straits Times. (Straits Times)

Nov 5: A TRIP to the supermarket will cost more now than it did at the beginning of the year. A Straits Times check on a random basket of basic goods sold at supermarkets here revealed price increases in almost every category, from fresh chicken to coffee and milk formula. (Straits Times)

Nov 5: Prices for Singapore Petroleum Company Limited (SPC) motor gasoline across all three grades and diesel will be increased by seven cents per litre. (SPC)

Nov 8: Raffles Place retailers face space crunch, soaring rents. A recent study by property consultant Cushman & Wakefield found rent rises of up to 24 per cent over the past two years in the area. (Straits Times)

Nov 23: Singapore‘s October CPI up 3.6% on-year, 1.3% on-month. Singapore‘s October consumer prices rose 3.6 percent from a year earlier after an increase in the Goods and Services Tax (GST), government data showed on Friday. (CNA)

Nov 29: Pump prices increase by 5 cents. All four oil companies — Shell, Caltex, ExxonMobil and Singapore Petroleum Company (SPC) — have increased pump prices for petrol and diesel by five cents. In the past 11 months, the price of petrol has shot up nine times and twice just in this month alone. (CNA)

Nov 29: Second Link toll charges to go up next year. VEHICLES from Singapore crossing into Johor via the Second Link Expressway will have to pay higher tolls from Jan 1, the Malaysian government announced yesterday. Passenger cars using the Second Link route will have to pay RM10.80 (S$4.60) next year, compared with RM8.40 now. (Asia One)

Dec 9: Price of luncheon meat soar, from $1 to as high as $3. Prices of luncheon meat have been on the rise since August when the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) rejected and destroyed a consignment of canned pork products from two food processing plants in China. (New Paper)

Dec 10: ComfortDelgro raises taxi fares. Commuters will pay between 18 per cent and 49 per cent more for a taxi ride home from the city from 5pm to midnight. (Straits Times) (CNA)

Dec 11: SCHOOL bus fares will go up by at least $5 to $10 in January, sparked by the increase in diesel prices in recent months. (Straits Times)

Dec 14: Singapore‘s second-largest taxi operator SMRT will be raising its fares from next Friday, December 21. The changes are in line with the adjustments made by market leader ComfortDelGro which will be increasing fares from December 17. (CNA)

Dec 14: Hike in POSB coins charge excessive. “IN THE past, whenever I made a deposit or withdrawal in coins, I paid $5 in service charge for every $500. Now, I have to pay $15 for every $500. So if I changed $1,000 into coins, I would lose $30.” (ST Forum Page)

Dec 14: Adjustment rate for housing loan changed unilaterally. “This unilateral change in adjustment rate is an increase in effective interest on the loan, and it is done without changing the loan interest rates. Is it fair for banks to offer adjustment rates as a ‘feature’ to woo customers but, six months into the loan, unilaterally reduce the benefits of the feature?” (ST Forum Page)

Dec 14: Hike in luggage surcharge wasn’t publicized. “When they were at the check-in counter, they were informed that the overweight charge was $20, not $8, and if they did not pay up they would not get their boarding passes. They had no choice but to pay.” (ST Forum Page)

Dec 20: Potong Pasir to raise S&C charges. THE opposition-held Potong Pasir ward is raising its service and conservancy (S&C) charges for the first time in a decade. Residents there will pay between $2.50 and $8 more a month, depending on the size of their HDB flat. (Straits Times)

Dec 20: Expect to pay more for food from next month. SINGAPOREANS should brace themselves for a sharp hike in food prices starting from New Year’s Day, which could affect anything from curry puffs to ice cream. (Asia One)

Dec 24: Singapore‘s Nov consumer prices up 4.2% year-on-year. Singapore‘s consumer prices rose faster-than-expected in November. The consumer price index – a non-core measure of costs for goods and services – rose 4.2 percent from a year earlier, after rising 3.6 percent in October. (CNA)

Dec 28: Electricity tariffs to go up. Highest since 2001. From next month (Jan 2008), electricity tariffs will go up nearly 6 per cent, to 22.62 cents per kilowatt-hour (kwh). (Straits Times)

2007: HDB ups valuation and administrative fees for valuation report of flats. This is to include the new 7% GST. (link)

Quote:

Aug 24:

‘With rents rising, and some retailers not passing on the GST hike until later, we expect CPI inflation to continue to climb, probably close to 3 per cent towards year-end,’ said Citigroup economist Chua Hak Bin.

“Consumers Association of Singapore president Yeo Guat Kwang, who is also MP for Aljunied GRC, said if prices go up because of supply and demand conditions, that cannot be helped: ‘What we need to ensure is that price adjustments are fair.

‘So far, we haven’t seen a phenomenon of businesses profiteering from the GST rise,’ said Mr Yeo, who is the deputy chairman of the Committee Against GST Profiteering.

‘Most importantly, prices of basic necessities have remained stable.’

(Straits Times, Aug 24, 2007)

Other reports:

A relentless spiral by Littlespeck. (link)

CASE survey. (link)

Govt spells out fees to be frozen. (link) (link)


2008

Jan 3: Second Link tolls to go up from Feb 1. The tolls for all motorists at Tuas Second Link will be raised by between 10 cents and S$4.40 from 1 February. Motorcyclists will need to pay 10 cents more than the current toll of 60 cents. Cars will be tolled S$4.60, while vans and small lorries will be charged S$10.50. The largest jump is for big lorries, which will have to pay S$21 – S$4.40 more than the current S$16.60. (Channel NewsAsia)

Jan 08: Motorists to face five new ERP gantries. MOTORISTS can expect to pay more over the next few months to use the roads when five new ERP gantries are up, many in the heart of residential areas. (Straits Times) (Straits Times)

Jan 14: Prices of CNY goodies to go up. BE PREPARED to spend 10 per cent to 20 per cent more on foodstuffs this Chinese New Year. (Straits Times)

Jan 15: Inflation in S’pore may hit 6.5% this month. CONSUMER prices in Singapore may surge a staggering 6.5 per cent this month, bringing full- year average inflation to an equally eye-popping 5 per cent, according to Citigroup. (Straits Times)

Jan 18: Lunar New Year dinner prices set to rise by at least 10 per cent. Prices for restaurant dinners are set to rise by at least 10 per cent. (CNA)

Jan 23: Prices of suckling pigs double due to supply shortage in China. The prices of suckling pigs have doubled recently due to a drop in supply from China, and a 5kg pig is going for as much as S$180. (CNA)

Jan 24: Singapore’s consumer price index (CPI) … rose 4.4 per cent last month from a year earlier, with transport contributing the most. (TODAY)

Jan 25: Resale HDB flat prices up 30% above valuation in Q4. BUYERS of resale Housing Board flats found themselves paying $22,000 above the valuation from October to December – a whopping 30 per cent increase more than the previous quarter. (Straits Times)

Jan 29: ERP rates to go up by S$0.50 at certain gantries from Feb 4. Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) rates are set to go up by S$0.50 starting 4 February, according to the Land Transport Authority. (CNA)

Jan 30: ERP rates, more gantries to go up – but road tax cut by 15%. Minister Lim said 16 new gantries will go on between April and November, bringing the total number in operation to 71. This is just the start. The base ERP rate will be upped from $1 to $2, with the increments in $1 instead of the current 50 cents. To make ERP more effective in a rising affluent community, these changes will be made gradually. (Straits Times)

Jan 30: MediShield premiums to go up for better cover. YEARLY premiums for basic MediShield insurance are set to increase – by about $120 for most people – to ensure that subsidised patients saddled with big hospital bills will get better payouts. (Straits Times)

Jan 30: Prime Taxis to raise fares from March. AFTER holding out for over a month, Singapore’s smallest cab operator, Prime Taxis, will raise its fares to come in line with other companies here. (Straits Times)

Jan 30: Prices for tickets for all Cathay cineplexes to go up on Jan 31. Expect to pay up to $10.50 on a weekend. (TODAY)

Feb 02: Prices of vegetables are up between 5 and 10 per cent because higher oil prices. YOUR shopping basket will be a little more expensive this year, no thanks to a rise in vegetable prices. (The New Paper)

Feb 4: Singapore inflation may exceed 5 percent this year – PM Lee. Inflation in the city-state could accelerate to 5 percent this year after rising 2.1 percent in 2007 given rising commodity prices worldwide, the Business Times newspaper quoted Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong as saying. (Forbes)

Feb 04: Businesses say new ERP gantries may increase operating costs. The rise in Electronic Road Pricing and increase in the number of ERP gantries is worrying at least one business – the couriers. (CNA)

Feb 14: Varsities up tuition fees by 4% to 20%. TUITION fees at the three local universities will go up by between 4 per cent and 20 per cent for the new batch of undergraduates entering in August. (Straits Times)

Feb 26: INFLATION accelerated last month to a 26-year high of 6.6 per cent with housing, food and transport costs registering steep increases over the past year. (Straits Times)

Mar 3: Caltex increases petrol and diesel pump prices. The company increased all grades of petrol by 4 cents per litre at 11am on Monday. Its Regular 95 petrol is now priced at S$2.046 a litre, Regular 98 at S$2.12 and Premium 98 petrol is S$2.286 per litre before discount. (CNA)

March 10: Park in Orchard area? It’ll cost you even more. Parking fees have gone up at 18 out of 20 malls, in one case by 36 per cent. (Straits Times, AsiaOne)

March 12: Fishball prices increase 20% due to rising cost of raw ingredients. Retailers said the prices of fishballs have risen by 20 per cent since last July due to rising cost of raw ingredients. (CNA)

March 17: Price of Chinese herbs to increase by 10%-20%. The price of Chinese herbs is set to increase by 10-20 percent. (CNA)

March 18: Barely two weeks after an increase in pump prices … all four petrol companies raised prices yesterday. Petrol and diesel prices went up by four cents and five cents per litre respectively, with the exception of Shell’s V-Power, which went up by three cents, and Caltex Platinum Techron, which remained unchanged. Regular 98-octane petrol at all four petrol chains now costs $2.160 a litre, while diesel is $1.613 a litre, before discounts. (TODAY)

March 19: Cost of electricity to go up from April as oil prices rise. Electricity tariffs will go up by an average of 1.26 cents (S$0.0126) per kilowatt starting 1 April. (CNA)

March 25: Singapore’s CPI up 6.5 pct year-on-year in February. Singapore’s consumer price index (CPI) jumped 6.5 percent in February from a year earlier, after gaining a 25-year high of 6.6 percent in January. (Trading Markets)

March 25: Singapore inflation stays at 26-year high. Prices of meat and poultry, cooking oils and dairy products clocked double-digit gains, while rice, cereal and fruit cost almost 10 per cent more than they did last year. High oil prices also made themselves felt in electricity bills and at petrol pumps. Indeed, transport costs jumped 9.6 per cent, boosted also by higher taxi fares and car prices. (Straits Times)

March 25: Prices of coffee, milk, sugar rise. In the past six months, the price of a 40-sachet bag of Nescafe 3-in-1 Regular Coffeemix has risen by 14 to 19 per cent across most major supermarkets. It costs $5.20 at Cold Storage and NTUC FairPrice. Super 3-in-1 Coffeemix is up 5 to 9 per cent, and now costs $4.95 at Cold Storage and $4.80 at NTUC FairPrice. (Straits Times)

March 26: Price of paper up by as much as 40%. The price of paper around the world has gone up by as much as 40 percent over the past year. This has caused the price of recycled paper to increase by 100 percent. (CNA)

March 28: NETS revises pricing for NETS CashCard. Consumers are going to have pay more for their NETS CashCard come May, as it will include the cost of the CashCard as well. (CNA)

March 29: Prices of rice rise. FairPrice raises price of its house brand varieties after Thai rice jumps 30% overnight. A 5kg bag of FairPrice Thai White Fragrant Rice now costs $5.30, up from $4.70, and a 10kg bag of Double FairPrice Thai Hom Mali Rice now goes for $17.90, up from $16.25. (Straits Times)

April 5: FairPrice ups price for one premium rice brand. SINGAPORE‘S biggest supermarket chain, NTUC FairPrice, on Friday hiked the price of one of its in-house brands of premium rice. The rise is NTUC’s second in as many weeks: It hiked prices of three other in-house brands of rice by between 60 cents and $1.65 last week. (Straits Times)

April 23: Singapore’s March inflation rate up 6.7% on-year. The CPI for the first quarter of this year was 6.6 percent higher compared with the same quarter of previous year. On a seasonally adjusted basis, the CPI in March was 0.3% higher compared with February. Singapore’s inflation rate has been hovering at its highest level in 26 years. (CNA)

April 23: Pump prices up across all brands. THE OTHER oil companies have all followed Caltex’s move to raise pump prices here. ExxonMobil, Singapore Petroleum Co and Shell on Wednesday upped petrol prices by three cents a litre and diesel by five cents. The latest pump price adjustment is the 10th consecutive increase since July last year – 11th if the GST-triggered increase on July 1, 2007 were to be included. (Straits Times)

April 25: Sharp hike in kindergarten fees. SOME 1,500 students attending the seven PAP Community Foundation (PCF) kindergartens in Woodlands will see their fees shoot up by 30 to 100 per cent. (TODAY, April 25.)

May 3: Rice and cooking oil lead price rise. Yes, the price of rice is going up. But so too are the prices of cooking oil and other items such as instant noodles. (Straits Times)

May 3: SIZZLING HOT: Cooking oil prices on the boil. In the last two months, retail prices have jumped between 9per cent and 56 per cent, depending on the brand.. (Straits Times)

May 9: Expect to pay higher electricity bills. Soaring crude oil prices drove the benchmark market price of electricity to a record last month, and there is not much relief in sight. (Straits Times)

May 16: Caltex pump prices up. Prices at Caltex were increased as of 10.00am today. Prices of Silver, Gold and Platinum petrol grades went by $0.02 to $2.136, $2.210 and $2.336 respectively. (AsiaOne) (TODAY)

May 19: Food operators to charge more for home deliveries. A Straits Times check with 25 food-delivery services found that more than half have increased their menu prices by at least a dollar in the last few months. Five have also upped their delivery fees, while three have increased their minimum order amount. (AsiaOne)

May 23: Singapore inflation rate hits new 26-year high of 7.5% in April. Singapore’s annual inflation rate rose to a new 26-year high of 7.5 percent in April as food, housing and transportation costs soared and is now a risk to the economy, the government said on Friday. (CNA)

May 24: Pump prices up for second time in a week. The latest jump – the 12th consecutive increase since last July – was sparked when oil giant Shell upped petrol prices by five cents a litre and diesel by seven cents at 5pm on Thursday. (Straits Times)

June 5: Poultry prices to rise due to higher transportation costs. The cost of every kilogramme of duck to go up by five cents. The price of chicken products is also expected to increase. (CNA)

June 7: Singapore consumers to feel knock-on effects. THE fuel price hike in Malaysia is going to bite Singaporeans soon, and hard. Prices of a range of goods are set to go up as the cost of trucking them in rises, and fresh food tops the list. (Straits Times)

June 7: Singapore‘s poor turn to temples to fill bellies. Many Singaporeans increasingly turning to free meals at temples to fill their stomachs, as surging global commodity prices hurt, even in a country that is one of the richest in Asia. (Reuters)

June 7: Coach fares to Malaysia up. The Express Bus Agencies Association (EBAA), which accounts for six in 10 buses heading across the Singapore border, has raised its fuel and insurance surcharges from a previous flat fee of $3, to between $5 and $16 — that’s up to five times more — depending on your destination. (TODAY)

June 11: Up prices of eggs and some vegetables. The prices of eggs and some vegetables have jumped at wet markets across the island, according to a Straits Times check. This comes barely a week after MalaysiaSingapore‘s biggest food supplier – trimmed domestic fuel subsidies. (Straits Times)

June 18: ERP rates in CBD to go up, 5 new gantries added. About half of existing ERP gantries islandwide will see their rates increase from July 7. (CNA) (Straits Times)

June 19: Housebrand rice prices up. The Consumers Association of Singapore (Case) has found that prices for housebrands rose between 14 and58 per cent last month. The most dramatic jump was for Cold Storage’s First Choice Thai Fragrant Rice: :From between $8.75 and $9.10 for a 5kg-pack, to $13.80. (TODAY)

June 25: Pump prices up for 13th time since last July. PUMP prices have risen again, with petrol going up by five cents a litre and diesel, 10 cents.This latest increase, the 13th consecutive rise since last July, started when oil giant Shell raised rates at 4pm yesterday. By evening, Caltex and ExxonMobil had followed suit.(Straits Times) (TODAY)

June 25: Electricity tariffs to rise 4.98% from next quarter. Electricity tariffs will go up by 4.98 per cent or by 1.19 cents per kilo watt per hour (kWh) for all households from the next quarter, beginning July 1. (CNA)

June 28: Premium bus fares to go up. PREMIUM bus fares will soon go up, as operators here feel the pinch from higher fuel prices. SBS Transit, which runs more than half of such services, will raise fares by 30 to 60 cents, up to a maximum of $3.60 per trip. The fare hike will affect all of its 40 premium services. (Straits Times)

July 2: Private bus operators up prices over diesel price hikes. FACED with skyrocketing diesel prices, private bus operators are charging more to transport workers and rent out coaches. Ten bus companies contacted by The Straits Times said they have raised prices by at least 10 per cent in the last few months due to rising rising diesel prices, which have almost doubled in the last year. (Straits Times)

July 6: 5 S’pore River ERP gantries kick in on Monday. The new gantries, which will bring the total number of gantries in Singapore to 65, will charge $2 from 6pm to 7.30pm and $1 from 7.30pm to 8pm. (Straits Times)

July 7: Expect to see more of these gantries in coming months. New KPE will have 16, taking grand total from 60 to more than 80. When it opens fully on Sept 20, it will have the most ERP gantries among all roads here. New KPE will have 16, taking grand total from 60 to more than 80 (Straits Times)

July 12: 30-cent fuel levy for cab rides from Thursday. MOST cab rides will cost 30 cents more from next Thursday, after Singapore’s largest taxi operator ComfortDelGro yesterday announced its decision to levy a fuel surcharge on all trips. (Straits Times)

July 14: School bus fares going up on Aug 1. SCHOOL bus operators, bitten by skyrocketing diesel prices, could soon start charging parents $10 to $15 more a month to ferry schoolchildren. (Straits Times)

July 19: SMRT Taxis to levy 30 cents fuel surcharge. SMRT Taxis will levy a fuel surcharge of 30 cents per trip for all taxi trips from July 26. The fuel surcharge will apply to all flag down trips, as well as call centre and advanced bookings, SMRT said in a press release on Saturday. SMRT’s move came after ComfortDelGro implemented the surcharge on Thursday. (Straits Times)

July 22: High power bills: Record number of cases probed. A RECORD number of complaints about overcharging for electricity were investigated by Singapore Power last month. SP Services, the power company’s customer service arm, said it looked into 1,093 cases where customers had complained that their bills for May were higher than in previous months. (Straits Times)

July 23: S’pore June inflation rises 7.5% on higher food, housing costs. Singapore’s consumer inflation stood at a 26-year high in June, rising 7.5 per cent compared with a year ago, according to latest figures from the Department of Statistics. (CNA)

July 24: Singapore ranked fifth most expensive city in Asia. Singapore is now the fifth most expensive city in Asia, according to Mercer Worldwide Cost of Living Survey. In world standings, Singapore is in 13th position, one notch higher than in 2007. (CNA)

July 30: Heartland shoppers hit hardest by Nets fee hike. SOME mom-and-pop stores in the heartland are passing on an increase in Nets fees to consumers, despite being barred from doing so. (Straits Times)

25 August: CPI for households up 7.1% in first six months. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) for households increased by 7.1 per cent in the first half of 2008 compared with the same period last year. (CNA)

Aug 29: More unable to pay electricity bills. 35% of families with power bill woes stay in larger 4- or 5-room flats. As of June this year, about 13,700 households have been put on a pre-paid metering scheme after they had their power supply cut off or were in danger of having the supply disconnected. (Straits Times)

August 30: SINGAPORE‘S public hospitals have raised ward charges in the last two months. The increases at Alexandra Hospital (AH), Changi General Hospital, KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital and SGH took effect at the beginning of July. Tan Tock Seng Hospital and the National University Hospital (NUH) raised their fees this month. (Straits Times).

Sept 12: Bus and train fares up on October 1. The Public Transport Council (PTC) has given the green light for an overall net fare adjustment that will result in fare changes that will range from a 7-cent reduction to a 4-cent increase per journey. (CNA)

Sept 28: Childcare fees going up. The average monthly fees for childcare and infant care now are $684 and $1,184 respectively. A Sunday Times check with 20 childcare centres found that all but three intend to charge $30 to $120 more a month. (Straits Times)

Sept 29: Households to see average rise of about 22% in electricity bills from Oct. On average, all SP Services customers will face a 21.89 per cent increase. (CNA)

Sept 28: Some papers to cost more. The subscription and newsstand prices of both The Straits Times and The Sunday Times, currently at 70 cents and 80 cents respectively, will increase by 10 cents for the Sunday to Friday editions, and by 20 cents for the bumper Saturday edition. (Straits Times)

Oct 6: SingTel increases local fixed line subscription and call rates. SingTel is increasing its local fixed line subscription by S$10 a year from January 1, 2009. Residential customers will therefore pay S$110 per year in subscription and business customers will pay S$160 per year. (CNA)

Oct 21: 3rd ERP gantry on PIE to kick in. MOTORISTS heading west on the Pan-Island Expressway (PIE) will have to pay Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) charges to drive beyond Eunos from Nov 3. The gantry along the expressway near the Eunos exit will be activated, charging $2 between 7am and 7.30am, and $1 between 7.30am and 8am. (Straits Times)

Oct 23: Singapore‘s September inflation up 6.7% on-year. Singapore‘s consumer price index rose 6.7 per cent in September compared with the same period last year. (CNA)

Nov 24: Singapore‘s consumer price index (CPI) for October 2008 increased by 6.4 percent from a year ago due mainly to higher costs of housing and food. (Bernama)

Nov 25: Vegetable prices rise 10-15% due to early rainy season. Vegetable prices have risen by 10 to 15 percent on average during the past month due to the rainy season. (CNA)

Dec3: JUST months after food prices began retreating from record highs, the tab on some products is rising again, sparked in large part by the weakening Singapore dollar. (Straits Times)

Dec 11: 14% hike in school-bus fares too hefty. I was shocked to learn that the fare will be raised to $78. I recall that, just six months ago, it went up by 7 per cent from $68 to $73. (Straits Times)


2010

18 Feb: Singapore polytechnics and ITEto increase tuition fees

22 Feb: Foreign worker levies to go up from July

9 Mar: At least two town councils to up S&C charges

12 Mar: Licence fees to sell cigarettes could increase

18 Mar: Singapore’s 3 public universities, NUS, NTU, SMU, to raise tuition fees

23 Mar: Sheng Siong raises rent at 5 wet markets by 30%

30 Mar: Electricity to cost more from April.

1 Apr: HDB resale prices up 2.7%

20 Apr: Public transport fares to go down 2.5 per cent?

22 Apr: Home loan rates rise.

24 Apr: Private home prices up.

26 Apr: ERP rates up from May 3

30 June: Electricity tariffs to go up again.

02 July: HDB resale prices up 3.8%.

03 July: Distance-based fares for public transport takes effect.

23 July: Resale flat prices up 4.1 per cent.

02 Aug: Night parking charges doubled.

05 Aug: Pump prices up again.

24 August: Singapore inflation up in July

23 September: Singapore’s August inflation up 6.4% on-year

15 September: Rising food prices pinch Asian households

25 October: Inflation at highest level.

25 October: ERP rates to go up at 23 gantries across Singapore

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