The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) will provide further financial support to the maritime industry in the wake of the global COVID-19 outbreak. This is on top of previous measures announced under the Unity, Resilience and Solidarity Budgets.
The MaritimeSG Together Package, amounting to about S$27 million (US$19 million), will provide:
- Financial support to companies
- Financial support to individuals for training
- Financial and employment support to Singaporean seafarers
Below are some financial support measures, among others.
Support for maritime companies and individuals
- 30% port dues concession (this will be on top of all existing port dues concessions) for cargo vessels (for ocean-going vessels with a port stay of not more than five days; offshore vessels in port for offshore support will receive a 50% port dues concession for day 91 to day 180) from 1 May to 31 Dec 2020 (earlier, MPA has given a 50% port dues concession for passenger vessels from 1 Mar to 31 Dec 2020).
- 30% port dues concession for all non-passenger-carrying harbor craft in the Port of Singapore over the same period.
- MPA has earlier announced a 35% rebate to regional ferry operators to offset their monthly rental fees for overnight berthing of vessels and counter rental at Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal for three months starting Mar 2020. With effect from 1 May 2020, MPA will increase this support to 50% until 31 Dec 2020.
- A new Maritime Cluster Fund-Internship Reimbursement Scheme will help maritime companies continue to provide students (Institute of Technical Education, polytechnics and publicly funded autonomous local universities) who are Singaporeans or Singapore Permanent Residents with internship opportunities. MPA will co-fund 50% of the internship allowance paid by maritime companies, capped at $500 per month per intern, for up to a maximum period of six months.
- MPA will also increase its co-funding support under selected Maritime Cluster Fund schemes to up to 90%. These measures seek to encourage upskilling and further support maritime companies in their digital transformation efforts during this period.
Support for seafarers
- MPA and the Singapore Maritime Officers’ Union (SMOU) will roll out the Seafarers Relief Package for eligible seafarers who are unable to secure shipboard employment between 1 May to 31 Jul 2020. They can apply to receive up to $800 per month in financial assistance.
- To encourage Singaporeans to continue to pursue their career advancements, MPA, the Employment and Employability Institute (e2i), SMOU, and the Singapore Organisation of Seamen (SOS) are jointly providing $10,000 to eligible Certificate of Competency Class 1 holders who can accumulate at least six months of sea experience as Chief Officers or Second Engineers from Jan to Dec 2020.
- MPA will provide a one-off increase of $50,000 to its annual contribution of $150,000 to the seafarer missions in May 2020. The annual grant supports a wide range of welfare services for seafarers including free counselling services and pastoral care which are both available online.