Channel NewsAsia
Updated: 02/05/2013 05:11 | By Channel NewsAsia

Baby Bonus cash gift given to 310,000 children since 2001: minister

Baby Bonus cash gift given to 310,000 children since 2001: minister


Baby Bonus cash gift given to 310,000 children since 2001: minister

SINGAPORE: Over 310,000 children have received cash gifts since the Baby Bonus Scheme started in 2001.

At the same time, more than 240,000 children have opened Child Development Accounts (CDA), which gets dollar—for—dollar matching of savings from the government.

In total, the government has disbursed S$2.31 billion of benefits under the scheme till 2012.

Acting Minister for Social and Family Development Chan Chun Sing said this in a written parliamentary reply to Aljunied MP Muhamad Faisal Abdul Manap.

Mr Faisal had asked about:

The total amount of public funds channelled into Baby Bonus grants since the scheme’s inception in 2001

The breakdown of the type of expenditure that families spend on using the Baby Bonus grants

Which families, according to ethnicity and household income, have benefited most from the Baby Bonus grants and for these families, how much Baby Bonus grants are allocated to those with one child, two children, three children and beyond.

Mr Chan said the top three uses of the cash gifts were on child—related expenses, like milk powder, diapers, vaccinations and hospital expenses.

As for CDA monies, top uses were to pay expenses at child care centres, kindergartens and health care institutions.

For the 2001 to 2005 birth cohorts, 99 per cent of eligible children benefited from the Baby Bonus cash gift, and 97 per cent opened CDAs.

Mr Chan said there are some low income households that do not open a CDA, and his ministry will work to strengthen outreach to these families.

— CNA/xq

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