SINGAPORE: While Singapore continues to grow, the government stands ready to act if the economy hits a downturn, said Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam in Parliament on Tuesday.
He elaborated that specific measures and the level of government risk—sharing with businesses and banks would depend on the severity of the downturn.
Mr Tharman said: "The Ministry of Trade and Industry expects the Singapore economy to grow by 1.5 to 2.5 per cent for the whole of 2012.
"Nevertheless, I can assure members that we are monitoring the downside risks to Singapore’s economic and financial stability very closely. The government stands ready to provide assistance to businesses and workers should there be a more significant economic downturn."
Mr Tharman was responding to Nominated MP Teo Siong Seng, who asked whether the Finance Ministry will implement extraordinary financing measures like the Special Risk—Sharing Initiative (SRI) introduced as part of the resilience package launched during the financial crisis in 2008/2009.
The government had taken up 80 per cent of the risk share for the bridging loan programme to help SMEs in the event the economy goes into a tailspin.
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