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Singapore — A new scheme which kicks off this year will deem 440,000 people eligible to receive matching amounts of up to S$600 annually for cash top-ups made to their Central Provident Fund (CPF) Retirement Accounts (RA).

The CPF Board announced in a media release on Wednesday (Jan 6) that a total of 440,000 Singaporeans aged 55 to 70 are eligible for the Matched Retirement Savings Scheme (MRSS).

This is a new savings scheme announced last year to help senior Singaporeans who have yet to have the current Basic Retirement Sum (BRS) build their CPF retirement savings for higher monthly payouts in retirement.

The scheme will kick off this year and is scheduled to run for five years for a start, said the board.

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“Under MRSS, the Government will match every dollar of cash top-ups made to the RA of eligible members up to an annual cap of S$600, which can amount to S$3,000 over five years.”

To qualify for the MRSS, the CPF members must have less than the prevailing BRS amount which is S$93,000 for 2021. Furthermore, the member’s average monthly income should not exceed S$4,000 while their annual value of residence should not exceed S$13,000. This covers all Housing and Development Board (HDB) flats. The scheme is also limited to those who own not more than one property.

About 53 per cent of CPF members are eligible for the grant, said the board. Qualified members need not apply for MRSS as eligibility is assessed automatically annually based on data on record.

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Eligible members will receive a notification from the board at the beginning of each year  for confirmation.

The members or anyone else, including family members or employers, can perform the necessary cash top-ups.

“You can choose to top-up in small amounts (e.g. S$50 per month) or at a go. The matching grant of up to S$600 for a given year will be automatically credited into your RA at the beginning of the following year,” said the board.

“If an eligible senior who is age 55 in 2021 with S$40,000 in his CPF RA were to top up S$600 each year for five years, he would receive S$3,000 from himself and another S$3,000 from the Government,” said the board in an example.

“Coupled with the attractive CPF interest rates of up to 6% per annum, he would have accumulated an additional S$8,300 in his CPF RA by age 65, and this will translate into S$45 more in CPF monthly payouts for life.” /TISG

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