Firms should note carbon tax review

SINGAPORE: Singapore is determined to move along the path of being green and sustainable, and companies “should sit up and take notice” of the carbon tax review announced in this year’s budget, said minister in the prime minister’s office Indranee Rajah.

Hinting that carbon tax rates could go up further, Indranee, who is also second minister for finance, added: “You really have to send a signal to businesses.

“So by saying that we will review, that’s already one signal.

“Because when we review things, things may change.”

Her comments at the Money FM 89.3 SG Budget Conversations 2021 radio show came after deputy prime minister Heng Swee Keat said Singapore will review the trajectory and level of its carbon tax, which stands at S$5 per tonne of greenhouse gas emissions until 2023.

In 2018, the government said the rate would be increased to between S$10 and S$15 per tonne by 2030.

Asked by Money FM hosts Elliot Danker and Ryan Huang whether Singapore’s green-push may run into challenges, with companies still trying to recover from the pandemic, Indranee said inertia is expected during times of transition.

A positive way to encourage companies to come on board is through green financing, which attaches certain sustainability requirements to loans, she added.

The government had also announced in Budget 2021 that it will issue green bonds on select public infrastructure projects worth up to S$19bil, so as to serve as a reference for the Singapore dollar corporate green bond market. ─ The Straits Times/ANN

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