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Singapore Offers Financial Incentives For Maternity Leave

In an effort to increase fertility and replenish the country’s population, the Singaporean government is offering substantial incentives to women to bear more children. The government is paying employers up to $20,000 to grant working mothers eight weeks of maternity leave for a third child. Altogether, the Singaporean government will be shelling out at least $260 million for new financial incentives and childcare arrangements to help mothers. Couples bearing a second or third child will benefit from the “Baby Bonus” of a Children Development Account which the government will fund until the child’s sixth birthday, contributing from $500 to $1000 annually to the account. In addition, the government is offering huge tax breaks to working mothers of multiple children, cutting taxes as much as $20,000 to $40,000 for mothers of a third or fourth child. Singapore’s current efforts mark an abrupt change from the country’s former “Stop at Two” policy as the country now mobilizes an effort to increase child-bearing and strengthen Singapore’s population.

Sources:

The Business Times (http://business-times.asia1.com.sg/) 21 August 2000