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Singapore to fund infrastructure with debt as COVID swells deficit

GST hike 'sooner than later' in 2022-25, deputy PM says in budget speech

Proceeds from Singapore's planned bonds will go toward new rail lines like this one as well as tidal walls to protect against rising sea levels.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- Singapore will issue up to 90 billion Singapore dollars ($68 billion) in bonds to finance big infrastructure projects, the government revealed in a budget presentation on Tuesday, in a rare move for the wealthy city-state.

The country is bracing for a record fiscal deficit due to extensive spending to cushion the impact of COVID-19. In the past, it has generally issued government bonds for developing the domestic debt market, though the administration had said it was exploring such options for "long-term" infrastructure.

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