The Singapore government reported this week that the nation's income inequality gap narrowed, but workers at the lower end of the spectrum are still struggling to make ends meet.
The Ministry of Finance said a steady increase in the real incomes of low and middle income Singaporeans over the past five years at the individual and household level, together with the strengthening of social safety nets and greater progress in government taxes and transfers has helped narrow the gap.
The statement was made in the MOF's third issue of its Singapore Public Sector Outcomes Review (SPOR) published Thursday.
But according to 55-year-old Tam Ming Lee, the owner of a food stall at International Plaza in central Singapore, the cost of living and running her business has not improved in recent times, but instead has become more expensive.
"Rentals are going up, so is the cost of ingredients. The 7 percent goods & services tax maybe helping the government but it's not making it any easier for businesses to cope," said Lee, adding that there is much debate about these issues circulating on social media.
"Wages also remain stagnant even if people put in long hours. The government hasn't done anything to raise wages really," she added.