Taxation and Economic Development among Pacific Asian Countries

By Richard A. Musgrave; Ching-Huei Chang et al. | Go to book overview
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limit. Premiums can be based on income, with risk-pooling arrangements. Another possibility is that the contributions to the ordinary account in the CPF could be split into two parts, with one part functioning as it does now and the other part using the risk-pooling feature of social insurance. It would be much easier to shift from the present arrangements to introduction of modest social insurance elements than for the welfare states to shift in the direction of greater individual or family responsibility. This difficulty of reversibility should be kept in mind in any shift from the present arrangements.

Given the organic and paternalistic nature of the Singapore state, its needs will have a strong bearing on the reform of present social security arrangements. The manner and the extent of these reforms in turn can be expected to have far-reaching effects on the economic, social, and political life of Singapore.


Notes
1.
Singapore dollars are used unless explicitly stated otherwise. On September 8, 1993, US$1 = S$1.60.
2.
The proportion of singles among females 30-39 years increased from 13.4 percent in 1980 to 17.4 percent in 1990 ( Republic of Singapore, Department of Statistics, 1991, p. 2).
3.
Hirschman has argued that the thesis of perverse effects "asserts not merely that a movement or policy will fall short of its goal or will occasion unexpected costs or negative side effects but that the attempt to push society in a certain direction will result in its moving in the opposite direction" (1990, p. 50). Because the Singapore government has been involved in extensive social engineering in areas such as population planning, housing, and education, its belief in this thesis is quite selective.
4.
Detailed assumptions that form the basis of these calculations by the CPF board have not been made available.
5.
A report by the Advisory Council on the Aged has strongly recommended extension of the CPF scheme to the self-employed (1988, p. 13).
6.
Lim argues that it is because of this that health and education, both of which are characterized by significant market failures, have been picked over housing and over the nation's savings in the CPF for privatization (1989, p. 194).

References

Asher, M. G., 1985. "Forced Saving to Finance Merit Goods: An Economic Analysis of the Central Provident Fund Scheme of Singapore," Centre for Research on Federal Financial Relations, the Australian National University, Occasional Paper No. 36.

-----, 1991. "Social Adequacy and Equity of the Social Security Arrangements in Singapore," Centre for Advanced Studies, National University of Singapore, Occasional Paper No. 8, Singapore.

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