Other support measures for businesses and owners or managers of premises include waiver of certification fees for SG Clean quality mark and enhanced support under the Productivity Solutions Grant for Environmental Services industry
Singapore, 17 April 2020 – With effect from 1 April 2020, owners or managers of premises with confirmed COVID-19 cases can apply for assistance to defray part of the cleaning and disinfection costs. Under the new government assistance scheme, the National Environment Agency (NEA), Enterprise Singapore (ESG) and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) will co-fund 50 per cent of the third-party professional cleaning costs incurred by owners or managers of premises. This follows Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat’s announcement on 26 March 2020 that the government will co-fund professional cleaning costs for businesses with confirmed COVID-19 cases.
2 Since March 2020, the government agencies have defrayed 100% of the certification fees for the SG Clean quality mark, and will continue to waive the certification fees for more than 32,000 premises this year, as well as continue to support their re-certification in 2021 at no cost, for premises to maintain good cleanliness and hygiene standards.
3 At the same time, eligible companies that apply for the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG) for environmental services equipment/ solutions will receive enhanced support of up to 80 per cent of the qualifying cost of the equipment/ solution, capped at $350,000 per company.
Assistance Scheme for Premises with Confirmed COVID-19 Cases
4 The government recognises that for premises with confirmed COVID-19 cases, hiring a third-party professional cleaning business to carry out disinfection works can be costly due to the process and chemical products used. This assistance scheme is therefore targeted at defraying these costs for owners or managers of premises across various sectors (refer to ANNEX A for more info).
5 The scheme subsidises 50 per cent of cleaning and disinfection costs, capped at $3,000, and takes effect from 1 April to 31 December 2020. For tourism related establishments, which are generally larger than an average residential or commercial unit, a higher cap of $20,000 applies. STB has also extended its support of professional cleaning costs beyond licensed hotels, to include other tourism-related establishments such as MICE venues, attractions, cruise terminals and corresponding venues within the Integrated Resorts.
6 Applicants should submit their claims with supporting documents for verification by their designated agency. The funds will be disbursed subject to the relevant agency’s assessment of eligibility (refer to ANNEX A for more info on the application process).
Waiver of Certification Fees for SG Clean Quality Mark
7 Ensuring cleanliness of public spaces is a shared responsibility. The SG Clean campaign1 was launched on 16 February 2020 to raise hygiene standards and transform the cleanliness level of our public spaces, and to rally stakeholders and members of the public to do their part to keep Singapore clean. An important component of the campaign is the SG Clean quality mark, which serves as a premises-based sanitation and hygiene indicator and reflects the premises’ commitment to high standards of environmental public hygiene.
8 Since the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak, businesses and premises managers across Singapore have stepped up cleaning and other efforts to safeguard public health. Commitment to the SG Clean quality mark has been overwhelming, with more than 9,0002 premises certified SG Clean. In this aspect, ESG and STB have also been working with food and beverage (F&B), retail and tourism businesses to come on board SG Clean. The government will ramp up efforts to encourage premises to achieve SG Clean quality mark certification by 2020. To enable this, the agencies will continue to waive the certification fees this year and next year for more than 32,000 premises. These premises include preschools, transport nodes, community centres, religious buildings, stalls in coffeeshops and hawker centres, as well as F&B, retail and tourism businesses.
Building Up Capability of the Industry
9 As announced earlier at the budget debate on 4 March 2020, mandatory Environmental Sanitation standards3 will also be introduced later this year, and greater accountability will also be placed on premises managers for the cleanliness of their premises. NEA will work with sectoral leads to progressively implement the new requirements from 2021, starting with higher-risk premises with high footfall and immuno-vulnerable occupants. These include preschools, schools, eldercare facilities, hawker centres and coffeeshops. The new Environmental Sanitation regime will build on the SG Clean certification programme, and include requirements for pro-active routine cleaning and disinfection at specified frequencies.
10 The current COVID-19 situation is also an opportunity to transform the environmental services industry by raising the skills and productivity of this workforce. NEA launched the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG) for the environmental services industry in September 2018, to support the adoption of commercially available and proven environmental services technologies, including equipment and digital solutions. The funding support has been further enhanced and eligible companies can now be supported up to 80 per cent of the qualifying cost, capped at S$350,000 per company, from 1 April 2020 to 31 December 2020. The PSG is applicable to the cleaning, waste and pest management sectors (refer to ANNEX B for more info).
11 Collectively, the assistance scheme and waiver of certification fees for the SG Clean quality mark will help to defray costs for businesses and individuals during this challenging period. At the same time, NEA will continue to work with other partner agencies to build up capability of the industry and upskill the environmental services workforce through schemes such as the PSG, which enables environmental services companies to adopt proven technologies and solutions, as well as put in place job redesign processes, upskill their workers and improve productivity. Over time, we can uplift the overall standards of the environmental services industry by imposing mandatory cleaning standards on different types of premises, supported by strong local enterprises and a skilled workforce that is able to provide quality cleaning services to the public.
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For media queries, please contact:
Hazel Wee (Ms)
National Environment Agency
Tel: 6731 9737 / 9877 3074
Foo Xiao Xuan (Ms)
Tel: 6433 4400
Audrey Kang (Ms)
Communications, Marketing Group
Singapore Tourism Board
Tel: 9366 1778
About National Environment Agency
Formed on 1 July 2002, the National Environment Agency (NEA) is the leading public organisation responsible for ensuring a clean and green environment, and the sustainable development of Singapore. Its key roles are to protect Singapore's resources from pollution, maintain a high level of public health and provide timely meteorological information. NEA also develops and spearheads environmental initiatives and programmes through its partnership with the People, Public and Private sectors. It is committed to motivating every individual to care for the environment as a way of life, in order to sustain a quality living environment for present and future generations.
About Enterprise Singapore
Enterprise Singapore is the government agency championing enterprise development. We work with committed companies to build capabilities, innovate and internationalise.
We also support the growth of Singapore as a hub for global trading and startups, and build trust in Singapore’s products and services through quality and standards.
Visit www.enterprisesg.gov.sg for more information.
About the Singapore Tourism Board
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is the lead development agency for tourism, one of Singapore’s key economic sectors. Together with industry partners and the community, we shape a dynamic Singapore tourism landscape. We bring the Passion Made Possible brand to life by differentiating Singapore as a vibrant destination that inspires people to share and deepen their passions.
1 For more information on the SG Clean campaign, refer to: https://www.nea.gov.sg/media/news/news/index/sg-clean-campaignlaunched-to-rally-public-and-businesses-to-work-together-to-keep-singapore-clean.
2 Figure updated as of 13 April.
3 For more information on the new Environmental Sanitation regime, refer to: https://www.nea.gov.sg/media/news/news/index/environmental-sanitation-standards-to-be-made-mandatory-to-raise-public-hygienestandards.