SINGAPORE: The upcoming tranche of Community Development Council (CDC) vouchers will be distributed digitally, the five CDCs announced in a joint release with the People’s Association on Monday (Oct 18).
Over the next few months, voucher ambassadors from the CDCs and the SG Digital Office will be on the ground to invite and guide heartland merchants and hawkers to download and use the RedeemSG Merchant app.
The app will allow them to easily accept Government-issued digital vouchers and track voucher transactions, the release said.
“This is also in response to suggestions from merchants and hawkers for faster payouts, and to reduce the need for them to collect, count and hand over paper vouchers,” it added.
This is the first time the vouchers will be distributed digitally, as physical vouchers were previously used.
The S$130 million scheme, announced at this year’s Budget, is intended to thank all Singaporean households for their “spirit of resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic”, as well as to support heartland merchants and hawkers in their businesses.
A total of 1.3 million Singaporean households will each receive S$100 in the CDC vouchers in the coming months.
The roll out will begin with the recruitment and onboarding of heartland merchants and hawkers, who are invited to participate from Monday onwards.
They can register their interest online, a CDC Vouchers ambassador will reach out to them in the next two weeks to provide guidance on how to use the RedeemSG Merchant app.
Instructional videos and infographics will also be made available.
“When the CDC Vouchers Scheme is launched officially in a few months’ time, help will also be at hand to guide residents on how to claim their vouchers, with step-by-step videos and infographics,” the release said.
The scheme was improved to make redemptions easier and payouts faster following feedback from local businesses over the past year, says Mayors’ Committee Chairman and South West District Mayor Low Yen Ling.
She noted that the new app lets sellers track transactions easily and removes the hassle of collecting and counting paper vouchers.
Ms Low added that since the end of August this year, more than 5,000 enterprises have adopted digital solutions. Three in four Housing Board shops also currently offer e-payment options.
“We hope heartland merchants and hawkers will take this chance to get on board this free scheme which will not only help widen their customer base, but also provide a guided initiation to the use of digital platforms for their long-term growth and future,” she said.
South East District Mayor Mohd Fahmi Aliman said he hopes the scheme “can help give our local merchants and hawkers a boost in their business and also provide them with renewed confidence to overcome the pandemic”.
The CDC Vouchers, first introduced last year, can be used to redeem food, essential goods and services at participating heartland merchant shops and hawker stalls.