Published on : Wednesday, February 26, 2020
Singapore Tourism Board in association with leading trade organizations has decided to launch a support measures system for the tourism industry. This initiative has been undertaken to alleviate the adverse economic impact of the Covid-19 coronavirus on the tourism industry.
Around early February this year, a Stabilisation and Support Package was approved in the national budget 2020. This package was established to provide funding for practical measures that would help the tourism industry deal with the coronavirus crisis.
The Singapore Tourism Board, Workforce Singapore and SkillsFuture Singapore would be joining hands with the Singapore Hotel Association and the Food, Drinks and Allied Workers Union to execute the most recent plan.
Support measures are being offered to cut down potential cost reduction, train employees with additional skills and redesign jobs to keep the tourism sector prepared for the time when the business makes a comeback.
Tourism industry employers will have the facility of sending employees for selected sector-specific training programs. Over the next 3 months, such employees will have an enhanced absentee payroll support up to 90% of hourly salary at SGD10/hour. There is also an additional enhanced course fee support at 90% course fees. Support will also be provided to tourism companies to upgrade worker capability. The Training Industry Professionals in Tourism fund will pay 90% of training course fees and 50% of trainer fees from the previous cap.
Tourist guides will have the opportunity of developing skills in key areas. Digital literacy tourist guides would be eligible for training allowance of SGD600 post completion of 80 hours of training. This programme will allow guides to expand beyond mass-market services to better value-added services like becoming domain experts or organizing their own unique tours. Tourist will also have the facility of receiving wage support within one month of application. Self-employed tourist guides with official Singapore residential license will receive wage support of SGD1000 over three months for basic livelihood assistance. This application can be filed from 1st of March 2020 to April 2020 and would accessible approximately within a month of applying.
The Hotel Job Redesign Initiative and the Lean Enterprise Development Scheme has been introduced to support businesses in minimizing costs required for job redesigns and business transformations. The Hotel Industry will be supported with above SGD5 million for Job Redesign Place-and-Train Programme and Digital Marketing Place-and-Train Programme. Hotels can receive salary support up to 70% (that is SGD2000 per month each employee) during the training period to cut down the cost for new skills development as well as enhance their roles. This salary support has now been extended to 6 months.
In addition, special digital marketing training for the tourism sector would enhance long term digital presence of the industry.