People have always been saying that Singapore’s a fine city.
Some even went so far as to say that it’s because fines help to pay for Singapore’s upkeep.
Are they right? Well, yes.
But is it a significant part of the revenue? Maybe not.
Where Your Fine Money Goes To After You Pay
First thing first, before we talk about the figures, here’s a question that might have been plaguing you for a long time:
Where does your money go to after you pay your fine?
Does it go to the respective organisation that fined you? Like the NEA for littering and smoking fines, or HDB for carpark offences?
According to Article 145 of the Singapore Constitution, money collected from fines will be channelled into the Consolidated Fund, which is then given to the Ministry of Finance (MOF) to use for the budget.
In other words, your GST Voucher that you get every year could’ve been funded (in part) by you.
The Amount of Money Generated from Fines in S’pore in 2020 Contributed To 0.5% of S’pore’s Total Revenue
After hearing about how fines are used to finance Singapore, we got curious.
How big a portion is it, really?
And the answer, as it turns out, is “not much“. Or, at least, not as much as you might’ve imagined.
After squinting through the Singapore government revenue summary table provided by the Ministry of Finance here, we discovered that the amount of fines collected in 2020 was S$488 million.
The total receipts for the year were S$90 billion.
Doing some quick math, the proportion of revenue contributed to by fines in Singapore comes out to 0.5%.
In the same summary table, MOF also provided the estimate for the year ahead, and the proportion of revenue contributed is also estimated to be 0.5%.
But that’s not the most interesting part.
The Amount of Fines Collected In 2020 Exceeded The Estimation
Last year, all we heard about was Covid-19 and fines, where people were being slapped with fines throughout the year for not obeying Covid-19 rules.
Which makes you wonder whether Covid-19 led to more fines being imposed.
Well, it probably did, given how the amount of fines for 2020 was estimated to be $358 million.
In other words, Singapore has collected another $130 million in fines on top of what they’ve expected to get.
Interesting, isn’t it?
With that said, for those interested, you might want to check out our article on the highlights of Budget 2021 here.
Featured Image: joyfull / Shutterstock.com