Chief Editor June 24 2023

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Higher Success Rate for Appeals on Ethnic Integration Policy in 2022 than in 2021

Success rate of appeals in relation to the Ethnic Integration Policy (EIP) last year was about 33 per cent, a marginal increase from 21 per cent in 2020.

Since its inception in 1989, the Ethnic Integration Housing Policy (EIP)has been instrumental in ensuring a balanced distribution of ethnic communities across public housing estates. It aims to prevent the formation of racial enclaves and promote interaction and understanding among different ethnic groups. Under this policy, the Housing and Development Board (HDB) sets ethnic quotas for each neighborhood, ensuring a diverse mix of residents from different racial backgrounds.

The EIP appeals only constitued 1.5 per cent of the total resale HDB flat applications, according to Minister for Home Affairs and Law, Mr. K. Shanmugam.

HDB received 411 EIP-related appeals from flat owners in 2022. As of March this year, HDB acceded to 128 appeals – 92 from flat owners of Indian/other races, 29 from Malay flat owners and seven from Chinese flat owners.

In a recent statement at the Institute of Policy Studies' (IPS) Conference, Minister Shanmugam emphasized the positive impact of the policy, highlighting its role in fostering multicultural harmony and promoting a shared sense of national identity.

Beyond the physical integration of residents, the EIP has contributed to the development of a cohesive society, where individuals from different racial backgrounds interact and build meaningful connections. It has facilitated opportunities for cross-cultural exchanges, fostering greater understanding, empathy, and appreciation for one another's customs and traditions.

Minister Shanmugam acknowledged that resale HDB owners will face price pressure if they are restricted to selling to a particular race due to Ethnic Integration Policy. For instance, you are an Indian and your HDB block has reached the quota of Chinese and Malay, you can only sell to another person of your own race.

He added that EIP will not be abolished but HDB will exercise flexibility for this group on a case-by-case basis by giving flat owners more time to sell, waiving EIP limits in exceptional cases, or buying back their units directly.

How often are the EIP quota updated?

The ethnic proportions and SPR quota are updated on the first day of every month. The information is valid for resale applications submitted to HDB in the same month.

Important Notes for Resale HDB Buyers

Mxed race households can choose their household ethnic classification based on either the applicant's race or their spouse's race during resale flat purchase. A "Chinese-Malay" couple can choose to purchase under Chinese or Malay. The ethnic classification will remain the same when you subsequently sell the flat on the open market.