Budget 2006: Social Welfare & Roundup

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 23 February, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 23 February, 2006, 12:00am


'We would naturally have preferred to provide more welfare for our citizens. We would have liked to develop more parks, piazzas, open space and cultural and heritage sites. But where is the money for all these going to come from? In line with our belief in small government and given our limited resources, we must manage our finances prudently. On the welfare front, we provide the community with a basic safety net and aim to build a just and caring society. However, we cannot compare ourselves with welfare states as our community does not accept their high tax'


'To assist those in need who are capable of working, our focus is not only on providing welfare, but also on enhancing their capability through education and training, and giving them proper employment assistance and support'


'There is a widespread view in our community that education is an investment. I share this view ... For every university graduate who has passed through our education system, the government's total investment exceeds $1 million ...


'Increasing investment in infrastructure will not only promote economic development and bring more job opportunities, but also make our living environment more pleasant and enhance our competitiveness ... In line with our principle of investing where required, I am in support of pushing ahead with infrastructure development and am prepared, if necessary, to increase the estimate of expenditure for this'