SINGAPORE – 26 MAR 2020
The Infocomm Media Development Authority (“IMDA”) is calling on Singapore businesses to “Stay Healthy, Go Digital”, and launching a number of measures to help them address urgent COVID-19 challenges.
The measures, introduced jointly with Enterprise Singapore (“ESG”), are:
- An enhanced SMEs Go Digital Programme, which includes
Expanding the scope and raising co-funding support of pre-approved solutions eligible for the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG) to help businesses implement safe distancing and business continuity measures;
Providing support for businesses to digitally transform by adopting advanced digital solutions in order to deepen digital capabilities and strengthen them for the eventual recovery; and
- A new e-invoicing registration grant to help businesses eliminate the need to handle paper invoices
(a) Enhancing SMEs Go Digital
i. Expanding the Scope of Pre-Approved Solutions
The SMEs Go Digital programme helps small and medium enterprises (SMEs) build digital capabilities. Under the SMEs Go Digital programme, SMEs receive funding support for the adoption of pre-approved digital solutions through the PSG.
From 1 Apr 2020 to 31 Dec 2020, the scope of pre-approved digital solutions under PSG will be expanded to help enterprises implement safe distancing and business continuity measures. In addition, the maximum support level for PSG will be raised to 80%1. Businesses will receive more co-funding support for digitalisation, reducing the cash outlay required during this period. The expanded suite of PSG-supported solutions will now cover:
- Online collaboration tools
- Virtual meeting and telephony tools
- Queue management systems, and
- Temperature screening solutions
For more information about SMEs Go Digital Programme and digital solutions for SMEs, please visit SMEs Go Digital.
ii. Advanced Digital Solutions
Businesses can enjoy up to 80% co-funding support to adopt more advanced solutions to deepen their capabilities. This will enable them to be more resilient to other economic disruptions and to be ready to capture opportunities when the economy recovers. IMDA and ESG will be working with industry partners that are able to bring together a significant number of businesses to implement digital solutions for both within the enterprise and across the industry sector. Some examples include:
- Advanced security and facilities management systems for buildings – cluster guarding , digital concierges , sensors and analytics for energy management and predictive maintenance, smart toilet systems, and mobile robots for security and/or cleaning. These solutions will help enterprises balance the need to minimise physical contact among staff with the increased demand for security, cleaning and maintenance. It will also help to integrate security, cleaning and maintenance for more seamless facilities management.
- Integrated Business-to-Business (B2B) systems to facilitate end-to-end transactions between buyers and sellers. These would help businesses transit from paper transactions to electronic transactions by covering inter-linked transactions such as e-procurement, e-invoicing, e-payments and inventory management.
Funding support can cover costs for hardware and software, infrastructure, connectivity, cybersecurity, integrations, development, enhancement and project management. It can also cover costs of replacing or expanding legacy systems and existing infrastructures.
The funding support will be available from 1 May 2020 to 31 December 2020.
(b) E-invoicing Registration Grant
IMDA will set aside $10 million to help businesses (a) implement work-from-home plans by eliminating the need to handle paper invoices in the short term; and (b) improve operational efficiency, and build a strong foundation for digitalising other business processes in the long term.
Businesses that register on the Nationwide E-invoicing Network by 31 Dec 2020 will receive a one-time grant of $200. Once registered, businesses will be able to send and receive e-invoices through the network.
Businesses can register through more than 50 Peppol-ready accounting and enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions. They will receive their grant via PayNow Corporate. For more information on the E-invoicing Registration Grant, please visit www.imda.gov.sg/einvoice or contact email@example.com.
IMDA implemented the Nationwide E-invoicing Network in 2019 to help businesses improve efficiency, reduce cost, enjoy faster payment and stay green at the same time. This network is an extension of the International Peppol E-Delivery Network allowing businesses to transact internationally with other linked companies. Companies in Singapore now can exchange e-invoices via the network with businesses in other countries.
Other Resources Available
The announcements today build on earlier measures announced by IMDA, including a collaboration with SGTech to curate digital solutions offered by the industry, for the industry, which was announced on 4 March. More than 50 solutions are currently available, aimed at helping businesses continue operations despite challenges brought about by COVID-19. IMDA will be adding other resources for businesses, such as relevant training programmes.
Earlier this week, IMDA also announced a series of initiatives, as part of its “Stay Healthy, Go Digital” call to Singaporeans, to help equip vulnerable groups with the relevant digital skills to adapt to the COVID-19 outbreak, such as buying daily necessities, paying bills and learning new skills online.
1 From 70% previously
2 Cluster guarding solutions enable the monitoring of a cluster of buildings using a single team, removing the need to deploy guards at each building.
3 Digital concierges perform tasks that physical concierges do (i.e. take requests, make bookings, answer questions) through a technology platform such as a kiosk or mobile application.