Singapore's government will be providing additional financial support to its aviation as it continues to weather the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) stated that Singapore will commit another SGD $84 million for its aviation companies on top of previous financial assistance provided including the Aviation Sector Package and the Enhanced Aviation Support Package.
As part of the new financial package, the funding will go to initiatives to develop and deploy technologies and measures to counter the COVID-19 virus. Rebates will also be provided include a 100% rebate off fees for Singapore-based airlines between April 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021 for their Certificates of Airworthiness. For the same time period, airlines will also get a 50% rebate off for license fees payable for ground handling and catering service providers at both Changi and Seletar Airports.
The financial assistance package will also include support for aviation industry workers affected by the wage and hour cuts. Pilots, air traffic controllers, and maintenance engineers will get a full rebate for medical evaluation and license fees. Funding will be available for aviation workers for training to transition to other jobs.
In a statement, the CAAS stated: “Through these measures, we will strengthen the resilience of our companies and workers in the aviation sector as the sector continues to weather the COVID-19 pandemic. This is critical to reviving our air hub and ensuring that we are well-positioned for the recovery of air travel.”
With no domestic air travel network for its airlines to go along with the global travel restrictions, Singapore's aviation industry has seen a sharp decline in passenger traffic movements. During the month of November 2020, Changi Airport reported a year-to-year drop of passenger traffic by around 98%.
The CAAS further added the future outlook for the aviation industry saying: “Given ongoing border restrictions and the resurgence of COVID-19 in many countries over winter, air travel will not recover soon. It is therefore critical that we maintain our support for the sector to help aviation companies and workers tide through the crisis.”