SINGAPORE - The government has been working hard to meet the basic needs of Singaporeans such as food, public transport, healthcare, and housing, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in his National Day Rally Chinese speech today.
He said that various measures have been rolled out to keep basic necessities affordable.
NTUC FairPrice's house brands, for instance, are value-for-money and help save costs, PM Lee said, and added jokingly that he was endorsing the supermarket chain.
He also said that some hawker centres will be managed by cooperatives or social enterprises and operate on a not-for-profit basis.
With regard to public transport, he said that wage increases have outpaced fare increases in the last 10 years.
Healthcare costs have been reduced through the Pioneer Generation Package and Medishield Life, PM Lee said.
As for housing, he said that prices have stabilised with cooling measures and increased supply. He will elaborate on new schemes to help low-income households own flats in his English speech.
PM Lee also touched on the external environment, which he said may upset regional stability and threaten Singapore's security.
He cited the political situation, Islamic State and terrorist threats, and the fight at Low Yat Plaza in Malaysia, saying that troubles across the Causeway can affect the harmony of the Republic.
Towards the end of his speech, PM Lee mentioned the General Election, but stopped short of giving a date.
"Many people tell me that the elections are coming soon! I replied: 'I've heard it too'," he said.