Public Officers & Management Will Take Pay Cut Of Either 0.5 Months Or 1 Month, Depending On Seniority

Times are hard even for the public sector amid the Covid-19 crisis. For the first time since 2009, civil servants won’t receive a mid-year bonus.

The Public Service Division (PSD) announced the news in a press release on Thursday (18 Jun), the latest of a string of bad news.

In addition, senior officers will take an additional pay cut of up to a month’s pay.

Last time mid-year bonus was scrapped was in 2009

The last time Singapore civil servants did not get a mid-year bonus was in 2009. That was during the Global Financial Crisis.

Normally, all civil servants will receive 2 Annual Variable Components (AVC) in a year — once in mid-year and another at the end of the year.

At the end of last year, the AVC dropped to 0.1 months’ pay, which was already thought to be bad enough. But things were only just getting started.

Along with the lack of a mid-year bonus, public officers and management will also take either a half-a-month or 1-month pay cut depending on their seniority.

Senior officers already took half a month of pay cut back in Feb.

Worsening economic outlook

The Government’s decision was made on the back of a worsening economic outlook.

The latest gross domestic product (GDP) growth forecast has dropped – it’s now -7% to -4 – and the unemployment rates of Singaporeans and residents rose in March.

While total employment for the first quarter of 2020 contracted sharply, the number of retrenchments has gone up, the PSD said.

PSD notes that public-sector unions were consulted in making this decision, and they stand in solidarity with the rest of Singapore during this tough period.

Things aren’t looking much better

While the situation isn’t set in stone for the year-end bonus, there’ll be special consideration given to lower-wage workers. Normally, they’ll get a lump sum payment.

Regardless, the outlook for any year-end bonus is already not looking too good.

As Singapore continues to reel from the worsening economic situation, it may be time for households to look into ensuring that there are enough funds for the future.

We wish all public servants all the best.

Featured image by MS News.