Tax policies must be carefully balanced so that tax revenues are not raised at the expense of economic growth. The taxation of capital gains per se can compromise Singapore's position as a major financial hub. We must continue to focus on the benefits of growing the funds and capital markets sector as a means to provide alternative capital to fuel growth for Singapore businesses and to grow our economy.
This will result in more corporate revenue and profits, jobs and salaries, and increase tax collections. From past data, estate duty did not contribute substantially to overall tax revenues and re-introducing it would taint Singapore as a wealth management hub. As current property tax rates and stamp duty on real property transactions are inherently progressive, some increases in the rates could be considered.
The majority of lower and middle income Singaporeans and smaller investors who are residential property owners could be spared so that they do not bear the brunt of this tax. The higher-end properties may have to shoulder the larger burden. Such taxation on wealth should not create a significant adverse impact on the matters mentioned above.