19 May 2012
A total of $ 115,000 was given out to 403 lucky taxpayers who pay their income tax and property tax by GIRO. This is nearly double the amount of cash prizes and number of lucky winners from the first ‘GIRO Your Tax’ lucky draw last year.
At the ‘GIRO Your Tax’ lucky draw roadshow held at Ion Orchard today, the top 3 winners, Mdm Chay Fong Ying (56, Operations Manager), Mr Mangaiahgar Sankara Narayana (50, Engineer) and Ms Thong Mei Lin (53, Accounts Executive), received $30,000, $15,000 and $10,000 respectively from Mr Heng Chee How, Senior Minister of State for Prime Minister’s Office and Deputy Secretary-General of the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC). This is the second of the 3 ‘GIRO Your Tax’ lucky draws organised by IRAS, as part of the ‘GIRO Your Tax’ campaign.
The lucky draws are open to all individuals who sign up for GIRO or who are already on GIRO to pay their property tax or income tax. The longer one stays on GIRO, the higher the chances of winning in the lucky draws. The grand lucky draw with cash prizes totalling $180,000, including the top prize of $50,000, will be conducted in May 2013.
Speaking at the event, the Guest-of-Honour Mr Heng said that while GIRO helps to keep IRAS’ costs of tax collection low and raise its productivity, individual taxpayers also stand to benefit from the 12 monthly instalments, which is free of interest. NTUC was on-site to encourage more people to sign up the GIRO scheme. Members of the public who signed up for both the GIRO scheme and NTUC Membership received welcome gifts of up to $188 on the spot.
The top prize winner, Mdm Chay Fong Ying, who attended the event with her two grandchildren, was delighted to have won the $30,000.
“I joined GIRO two years ago when IRAS started the GIRO lucky draw promotion. Previously, I used to pay my tax by cheques. But with GIRO, I have no more worries about due date. My income taxes are now recovered from my winning today!”
The list of winners is published here. It will also be published in the Straits Times on 22 May 2012.
At the launch of the ‘GIRO Your Tax’ campaign in 2010, IRAS aimed to add 400,000 GIRO sign-ups by the end of the campaign in 2013. To-date, having received about 220,000 GIRO sign-ups, IRAS is past the half-way mark of the target. There are now more than 1.35 million taxpayers who are paying their taxes through GIRO.
The lucky draw is part of IRAS’ three-year ‘GIRO Your Tax’ promotion campaign to encourage taxpayers to pay their taxes by GIRO. For IRAS, GIRO is the most cost-effective collection mode, enabling a higher certainty of tax collection and greater efficiency. IRAS will return to taxpayers what it saves from GIRO through $360,000 worth of lucky draw prizes over the three-year Lucky Draw to incentivise individual taxpayers to pay their taxes through GIRO.
For taxpayers, GIRO enables them to save time by doing away with the need to remember to write the cheque to meet the billing due date or queue up at payment kiosks. Instead of having to pay their taxes in full within 30 days of the notice of assessment, IRAS’ GIRO Scheme allows taxpayers to enjoy up to 12 interest-free instalment payments. In terms of refunds, taxpayers on GIRO will also obtain them faster, as the refunds can be credited directly to their accounts instead of having to wait for the cheques to arrive in the mailbox. They can be assured that they maintain full control over their money at all times, even when they take up the GIRO scheme. A taxpayer who wishes to adjust or cancel his GIRO arrangement can simply make a telephone call to IRAS.
Many easy ways to sign-up for GIRO
There are many ways to sign up for GIRO. Taxpayers can get instant approval when they apply for GIRO at any AXS station (for DBS/POSB customers) or through Internet banking (for DBS/POSB or OCBC customers). Alternatively, taxpayers may also sign up for GIRO using the payment voucher attached to their tax bill or visit IRAS’ website to download the GIRO application form. For more detailed information on GIRO application, please visit IRAS’ website at www.iras.gov.sg.
Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore