Hawkers who get on food delivery platforms can receive S$500 funding from NEA during circuit breaker

Hawkers who get on food delivery platforms can receive S$500 funding from NEA during circuit breaker

Safe distancing at Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre
Safe Distancing measures at Singapore's Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre on Apr 7, 2020. (Photo: MEWR)

SINGAPORE: Cooked food stallholders at hawker centres can now get a one-time funding of S$500 to help with the costs of signing up to delivery platforms. 

The funding is open to stallholders operating in hawker centres managed by the National Environment Agency (NEA) or NEA-appointed operators, said the agency in a media release on Saturday (Apr 18). 

"This is to mitigate the cost for stallholders who wish to engage food delivery services but are concerned about the onboarding fees, as well as to help defray other costs associated with food delivery," said NEA.

As part of Singapore's COVID-19 circuit breaker period, which started on Apr 7, dining in is not allowed at all food establishments until at least May 4.

This has prompted many F&B outlets to turn to food delivery platforms to reach consumers. 

However, there have been concerns about the steep commission fees charged by food delivery platforms, which can go as high as 40 per cent an order according to F&B owners that CNA spoke with recently.

Hawkers CNA spoke to also said that they remain hesitant about signing up with delivery platforms as the commissions are “too high” even with the one-month funding from Enterprise Singapore that was announced earlier this month. 

READ: As COVID-19 hits F&B sector, calls emerge for delivery apps to lower commission fees

To receive NEA's S$500 funding, hawkers are required to submit documentation of their agreement with the food delivery platform or third-party logistics player, along with any proof of food delivery orders made via them between Apr 7 and May 31 to nea_hpg@nea.gov.sg.

The agency added that upon verification, it will disburse the full S$500 amount to the stallholder’s bank account.

READ: COVID-19: Cleaning fees to be subsidised by NEA in support for stallholders at hawker centres

“Although we are currently unable to dine in at hawker centres, we want to ensure that Singaporeans have ready access to good and affordable food that our hawkers offer,” said Senior Minister of State for the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor.

“Many hawkers are still not on food delivery services and hence cannot benefit from this segment of the market which has significantly increased during this circuit breaker period and likely to further increase over time," she added.

"By encouraging hawkers to provide food delivery service to their customers through this one-time funding, we hope that members of the public can continue to enjoy food from their favourite hawker stalls during this challenging period.”

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Source: CNA/ga(gs)

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