At the May Day Rally in 2011 just before the general election held that year, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong told Singaporeans that his Govt was focusing on cost of living issues.
He said that the best long-term response was to ensure workers have jobs and enjoy a steady increase in wages. He also acknowledged, in spite of measures such as the $3.2 billion Grow & Share package at the time, Singaporeans were still worried about the cost of living.
“The government is very conscious of this (cost of living) and we will continue to focus on this,” he said. “And the ministers and I are personally very focused on this also, because we are very concerned that Singaporeans are worried and anxious and we want to be sure that whatever we can do, we will do.”
“So we are tracking very carefully what is happening elsewhere that can impact our prices and we are finding ways to buffer ourselves and to manage our domestic costs,” he assured.
GE2015: PM Lee’s assurance on cost of living
Four years later in Sep 2015 during PAP’s first election rally of GE2015, PM Lee again gave assurance that his government would continue to help citizens cope with the cost of living.
“(For) the big things which cost money – housing, medical care, transportation, education – these especially, the Government is able to help you,” he said.
The Government has “gone a long way to help every Singaporean own a home”, he said. He cited changes in HDB policy, such as raising the income ceiling for HDB flats to $12,000 from the previous $10,000, and giving lower-income families more help to buy flats.
He also cited statistics showing that 1,800 families earning less than $1,000 a month had bought two-room flats in the previous 4 years.
“So when I say we have made housing more affordable to help people with the cost of living, I’m telling the truth,” he said.
To cope with medical cost, he cited the Pioneer Generation Package of benefits for Singaporeans born in 1949 or earlier, and the Community Health Assist Scheme for lower- and middle-income households.
NDR 2018: Singaporeans must manage lifestyle changes to cope with cost of living, says PM Lee
On Sunday (19 Aug 2018) during the National Day Rally, he again talked about coping with the cost of living.
He said that while the government will help alleviate the cost of living, Singaporeans must also do their part to manage their lifestyle so as to cope with the cost of living.
He noted that developments in the last 20 years have resulted in long-lasting lifestyle changes. This is one key reason that Singaporeans are feeling cost of living pressures, he explained. That is to say, the government should not be blamed for any increase in cost of living.
He then gave tips to Singaporeans on how to cope with the rising cost of living:
- Go for $3 or less economic meal at hawker centres
- Be more mindful of water and electricity usage
- Watch the data usage on your phone
- Do not use 4G to watch movies outside
- Download the movie first using home Wi-Fi
- When outside, use [email protected] when available
Infant Milk Formula
- Use breast milk but some may need to supplement with formula
- He reminded everyone that he and his generation grew up without using expensive brands
- All infant formulas are suitable (i.e, don’t go for expensive ones)