Following the Ministerial Statement announced by Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat on 5 October 2020, Enterprise Singapore announced that it will enhance and extend grant and loan schemes for SMEs on 12 October 2020, which include, inter alia, the Market Readiness Assistance Grant (“MRA”), the Productivity Solutions Grant, Enterprise Development Grant and the PACT programme.
Enhanced MRA Grant Scheme
Eligible Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) will receive support from Enterprise Singapore up to S$100,000 per company per new market that covers:
- Overseas market promotion (capped at S$20,000)
- Overseas business development (capped at S$50,000)
- Overseas market set-up (capped at S$30,000)
With effect from 1 November 2020, SMEs that apply for the MRA grant will be eligible to have up to 80% of qualifying costs to regionalise and/or internationalise their business (up from 70% of qualifying costs under the current MRA grant scheme).
Supported Activities – Marketing, Business Development and Market Entry
Market Entry advisory, legal and documentation expenses relating to:
- Corporate entity name search;
- Intellectual property (IP) search and application (viz. trademark(s));
- Filing and registration for sales/representative offices or equity entity;
- Implementation of recommended tax structures;
- Import and export licences; and
- Drafting of franchising, licensing, agency, distributorship and joint venture agreements (limited to only the first set of such agreement(s);
In-depth FTA consultancy, advisory and legal expenses relating to market entry assessment, analysis of company’s supply chain, FTA compliance (including internal guidelines/checklist) and application procedures for customs rulings with issuing authority(ies) are also supported.
From 1 November 2020, the scope of the MRA grant’s coverage will be extended to cover participation in virtual trade fairs to encourage companies to find new overseas opportunities through such platforms.
The higher level of support currently available to businesses looking to pivot, grow and digitalise will also be available for an additional nine months from 1 January 2021 (viz. September 2021).
The Enterprise Development Grant and Productivity Solutions Grant will cover up to 80 per cent of qualifying costs until Sept 30 next year, after which they will cover up to 70 per cent.
October 2020 Job Support Scheme (JSS) Update:
The Ministry of Finance (MOF) and Inland Revenue Authority (IRAS) announced on Monday (October 19) that more than S$5.5 billion in Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) payouts will be disbursed to employers from October 29.
The payouts will be given to more than 140,000 employers, and is meant to subsidise the wages of around 1.9 million local employees.
The JSS provides wage support to employers to help them retain their local employees (Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents) during this period of economic uncertainty.
Under the scheme, the government co-funds between 25 to 75 per cent of the first S$4,600 of gross monthly wages paid to each Singaporean or permanent resident employee.
This update is provided to you for general information and should not be relied upon as legal advice.