Getting a Singapore Passport
Working in Singapore on an Employment Pass
Entrepreneurs and other potential hopefuls who wish to make the move into Singapore by living and working (and eventually getting a PR) would need to take the first step in the process, which is to acquire a valid Singapore work permit.
There are three options of work permits to choose from – the Entrepass, Employment Pass (EP) and S Pass. The Employment Pass is generally the most desired option, especially for those who eventually with to apply for a PR in Singapore as they do if they have been in Singapore for three years on the EP pass.
For those who are not familiar with what the EP is, it is Singapore’s main type of work visa that is issued to foreign professionals, employees, managers, owners and/or directors of Singaporean companies. The EP is Singapore’s most desirable work visa as it was designed to cater for international executives, managers and even specialists in their field who wish to live and work in Singapore and contribute to the local economy.
Among some of the benefits that EP holders stand to gain include hassle free travel in and out of Singapore, working for up to 3 years in Singapore, bringing in family as dependents, better pay and tax brackets, pursuing PR after fulfilling the requirements and even the option for the holders to start their own business.
Singapore recently introduced some changes to their EP eligibility criteria as of 1st January 2017, so foreigners who wish to apply for the pass would need to check online if they are eligible for the pass using the Ministry of Manpower (MOM)’s online self-assessment tool if they want to be sure.
Applying for a PR in Singapore
The general criteria to be eligible for a PR in Singapore is as follows:
- The applicant is a spouse or unmarried child (below 21-years of age) of a Singaporean Citizen or Singaporean Permanent Resident
- The applicant is an investor or entrepreneur
- The applicant is an aged parent of a Singaporean citizen
- The applicant is an EP or S Pass holder
There is also the option of applying for a PR in Singapore through Singapore’s Professional, Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers (PTS) Scheme, or the Global Investor Program (GIP) Scheme.
Professional, Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers Scheme
Known more commonly as the PTS scheme, PTS is designed to let individuals who already hold the S Pass or EP grab on to the opportunity of becoming part of Singapore’s permanent residents. Under the PTS scheme, the applicant’s spouses and children who are aged 21-years and below can also apply for the PR status.
Unmarried children who are over the age of 21, parents and in-laws will not be able to qualify for PR under this scheme with the applicant, but there’s no need to worry as they are eligible instead for the renewable Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP) which is valid for up to 5 years.
Male dependents who are granted PR may be required to take part in Singapore’s National Service program.
Each application that comes through under the PTS scheme will be carefully reviewed and assessed based on the candidate’s qualities and whether they fully meet the needed criteria. Each candidate will be assessed on the following aspects:
- Current profession and employment history
- Age of applicant (Certain exceptions are allowed depending on the circumstances; Ideally candidates should be under 50-years of age)
- Current credentials of most recent employer
- Current salary and overall financial status
- Personal interests and contributions to the Singaporean community
- Educational certificates and qualifications (Preference will be given to individuals who are graduates of reputable academic universities and institutions)
- Length of stay in Singapore (Individuals who remain for a longer period in Singapore stand a better chance of having their applications approved)
- Candidates who have family members who are already Singaporean citizens or Permanent Residents have an added advantage
Applicants who wish to apply for a PR in Singapore should ideally be working in Singapore for at least 12 months prior to submitting an application with the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore (ICA).
The Global Investor Program Scheme
For those with the means to invest a small fortune in Singapore, the GIP scheme is the one for you. GIP is also known as the Investor Scheme because it requires the applicant to invest a minimum of SGD2.5 million to get started.
To qualify for the GIP scheme, the following criteria must be met:
- Have the minimum required capital to invest
- At least 3-years of business or entrepreneurial track record
- Have at least 30% shareholding in the company (if privately owned)
- Submit the last 3-years of audited financial statements of your company
GIP’s scheme also allows applicants to apply for PR for their family member if they fall into the following categories:
- The applicant’s spouse and children aged 21-years and under
- The applicant’s parents and children who are over the age of 21 are eligible for the 5-year LTSV Pass which is renewable and tied to the validity of the main applicant’s re-entry permit