The government will initiate a few more major policy programmes for Singaporeans. As the current session of Parliament comes to an end, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said the next session will see the government working more on a stronger social safety net, and keeping upward paths open.
LONDON: The government will initiate a few more major policy programmes for Singaporeans.
As the current session of Parliament comes to an end, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said the next session will see the government working more on a stronger social safety net, and keeping upward paths open.
Speaking to reporters in London after wrapping up his seven-day visit to Europe, he said Parliament will be prorogued after its sitting on 14 April.
It will then reconvene in May, with the president setting out its programme for the rest of its term.
Mr Lee joined Singaporeans in London for Singapore Day celebrations on Saturday afternoon.
He said it was a fitting climax to his visit to Europe.
Amid the celebrations, Mr Lee gave a hint to Singaporeans of what to expect from the government for the second half of its term.
He said: "The broad scope of it, I've already sketched out at last year's Rally, which is our rebalancing towards a stronger social safety net, towards making sure the paths upwards are open towards helping everyone to level up and improve their quality of life as well as standard of living in Singapore.
“How to make that into programmes? We've started, we've already got MediShield Life; we've got a Pioneer Generation Package. I think these are two major components, and there will be more pieces to come, a few more pieces to come."
As for the Pioneer Generation Package, Mr Lee said it had gone down well with Singaporeans.
On how the government will continue to strengthen social safety nets, Mr Lee said that it would be a gradual shift, in a calibrated, controlled manner.
Mr Lee said: "There are a couple of other significant things which we need to do, but it's as much a shift in our mindset as it is of the individual policies. And I don't think there is a final end point to this, because this is a balance which will gradually and dynamically change as the situation changes."
Reflecting on the gathering of Singaporeans in London, Mr Lee said overseas Singaporeans are a part of the big Singapore family, and that it was good to come together for such a happy occasion.
He said: "Thousands of Singaporeans living abroad in London get to catch their favourite local acts in a concert put together specially for them. There is a strong Singapore spirit here as many relive their memories of home."
Singapore Day will be held in China next year, and Singaporeans there can look forward to something special as the nation celebrates its 50th birthday.
On the whole, Mr Lee said he was satisfied with his visit to Europe.
He had received strong support for the ratification of the European Union-Singapore Free Trade Agreement.
Looking ahead, however, Mr Lee said it is unlikely that the FTA will be ratified in May. With elections for the European Parliament pending, the ratification process will have to wait until the elections are over.