Parliamentary Replies
Published Date: 21 March 2023

Oral reply to Parliamentary Question on scope of Government's control over MAS on monetary policy and reserves

Date: For Parliament Sitting on 21 March 2023

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Assoc Prof Jamus Jerome Lim, Sengkang GRC


To ask the Prime Minister what is the scope of guidance or control on the choice of monetary regime or on the total level of reserves held, that the Government is able to convey to or exercise on MAS as an independent central bank.

Answer by Mr Alvin Tan, Minister of State, Ministry of Trade and Industry and Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, and Board member of MAS, on behalf of Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Senior Minister and Minister in charge of MAS:

1. The MAS Act states that MAS is to maintain price stability conducive to sustainable growth of the economy, and that it is to conduct monetary policy for this purpose. Within this stated mandate, MAS has full autonomy over the appropriate choice of monetary policy instrument and the formulation of monetary policy.

2. We have addressed questions on the Official Foreign Reserves (OFR) in this House several times, most recently during the Second Reading Speech on the MAS (Amendment) Bill on 11 January 2022See "Monetary Authority of Singapore (Amendment) Bill" - Second Reading Speech . These covered the purpose of maintaining OFR, how it is accumulated, how it is invested, and how much of it is needed. MAS assesses how much OFR is needed for the purpose of implementing its monetary policy, taking reference from internationally accepted measures of reserve adequacy as well as the highly open nature of our economy and financial markets.

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