Singapore: President Halimah Yacob gives assent to Budget 2018

Halimah Yacob
President Halimah Yacob gives her assent to the Supply Bill 2018. Facebook/Halimah Yacob/President's Office

Singapore President Halimah Yacob said on on Tuesday that she has given her assent to the Supply Bill 2018. Halimah wrote in a Facebook post that she took the "independent advice of the CPA (Council of Presidential Advisers)", who attended a detailed briefing on Budget 2018 by Ministry of Finance officials with her earlier this month.

The CPA recommended Halimah to give her assent to the Bill as the Budget is "unlikely to draw on Singapore's past reserves". The Supply Bill, which authorises how much the Government can spend within each Financial Year, requires the assent of the President.

The Elected President's discretionary power is enshrined in our Constitution which requires the concurrence of the President for any expenditure that draws down on Singapore's past reserves.

Halimah said in the Facebook post that this is to ensure that we plan our Budget in a fiscally sustainable and financially disciplined manner.

"We are faced with tremendous challenges in the face of rising protectionism, threats to global security and geo-political shifts. As a small country which is very dependent on trade and investments, our survival depends on an open and fair global trading system which is under threat," Halimah said.

She added that the "Budget 2018 has the right balance of preparing us for the future whilst at the same time helping Singaporeans weather the disruptions that we will face."

"Heavy investments in infrastructure, building our people's capabilities and strengthening our social programmes will ensure that we continue to maintain social cohesion and exclusivity, even as we keep Singapore competitive," the post read.

Halimah believes that "Budget is an important planning process and a rallying call for Singaporeans to work together to strive for a better future."

"The Budget provides us with the chance to reflect and think as a nation where we are heading and where we want our place to be in the world. The decisions we take today, will have an impact tomorrow," she added.