SINGAPORE: Nearly a third of the 18,000 hawker stalls in Singapore now offer e-payments amid a push by the Government to get more businesses to go digital.
Under the Hawkers Go Digital programme launched on Jun 8, the aim is to get 18,000 hawkers to adopt the SGQR code digital payment solution by the middle of next year.
As of July, 5,400 stallholders are using SGQR code, after 1,900 new sign-ups in the last two months, said a joint news release on Wednesday (Aug 12) by the Infocomm Media Development Authority, Enterprise Singapore and the SG Digital Office.
This is "good progress", they said, adding that digital ambassadors will continue to reach out to more stallholders.
BONUSES PAID OUT TO STALLHOLDERS WHO ADOPT E-PAYMENT
As part of the Hawkers Go Digital programme, a bonus of up to S$1,500 will be given to all stallholders who have shown “sustained use” of the e-payment solution, the agencies said.
To qualify for the bonus, stallholders must have completed at least 20 transactions each month worth at least S$1 each by May 31 next year on the unified e-payment solution. A bonus of S$300 will be paid for each month, up to five months.
In June, about 2,000 stallholders qualified for the bonus, and S$600,000 was paid out, said Minister for Communications and Information S Iswaran.
"What is significant about this is that it shows it is not difficult to achieve that target of encouraging the usage," he told reporters during a visit to Toa Payoh Lorong 8 Market and Food Centre.
"We have had good progress because of the support from various stakeholder groups," he added.
"It starts with the hawkers themselves – the owner of the stalls who have obviously stepped forward and demonstrated that they are very committed to this, and that they are not easily discouraged and they are prepared to try new things - which I think is a very good sign."
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Mr Iswaran added that the COVID-19 pandemic has given more reason to push towards digitalisation.
“The message of digitalisation is one that has been propagated for some time now, well before the onset of COVID-19," he said.
“What COVID-19 has done, is to accentuate the means and the impetus of digitalisation because for many businesses, digital transition has now become a matter of necessity and, I would say, survival - whether it is being able to sell online, take payments online, link up with logistics companies for last mile solutions and so on."