In order to fight the declining birth rate in the country, the Singapore Government has announced a one-time offer. This aid stands for people who want to have a baby but are postponing it because of uncertainties posed by the coronavirus pandemic.
Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister, Heng Swee Keat announced the incentive in the Parliament stating that “We have received feedback that Covid-19 has caused some aspiring parents to postpone their parenthood plans. To help with expenses during this period, we will introduce one-off additional support for newborns.”
The total amount offered under the scheme is yet to be disclosed.
The country is facing an economic recession and has recorded a decline of 12.6 % in its GDP in the second quarter this year in comparison to 2019 for the same duration. Due to this, the country has gone through some of the worst job and wage cuts in recent times.
This is not the first attempt by Singapore’s government to encourage its citizens to have more kids, as it has one of the lowest fertility rates in the world. Earlier governments have also tried to induce positive reinforcement through other financial and tax benefits.
The country is facing a downward slump in the childbirth rate ever since the 1980s.
The current childbirth rate stands at 8.584 births per 1000 people, which has been consistently declining for the past few years. Since the year 2019, the childbirth has declined by 0.96%.
According to the United Nations population division, if a country’s fertility rate goes below 2.1 then the country will suffer a decline in its population.
As per the National Statistics body, the current fertility for Singapore stands at 1.14, placing the country just above three other nations in the world. According to World Bank tally, Hong Kong, South Korea and Puerto Rico are only countries to have rates even below Singapore.