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How Do Foreigners Work in Singapore holding Employment Pass? Exploring Your Visa Opportunities

Lee November 26, 2015
Posted by Lee on November 26, 2015  /   Posted in Employment Pass
Singapore entrepass essential entepreneurs Brightest brains drain to Singapore. Open-armed attitude to foreign talents, neatly carried-out immigration policy, high quality of life, decent salaries, advanced integration work policy, multiculturalism, as well as easy and smart schemes of running a business attract more and more overseas business talents and employees. The government is overwhelmed by the piles of foreigners’ visa requests from all across the globe. Small island country with population of 5 million people is “home” to more than 100,000 expats and over 7,000 multinational firms.
Overseas employees aren’t allowed to work in SG without holding work visas, which were designed to stratify different categories of expats by their expertise, skills and immigration aims. Employment pass intended for the most qualified category of foreign labor force remains the most requested work visa to Singapore. A year ago the government has toughened criteria for EP in order to sift the inrush of immigrants and balance potentials of foreign and local talents. From now on, foreigners have to apply more force and involve more professional assistance to get approval for their Employment Passes: only the most winning candidacies are let into by the government.
E Pass is the most beneficial work visa for Singapore. It fits both a professional (executive or manager) seeking for employment in SG and a foreign director relocating his business to the country.

Granted for 1-2 years, it gives an exceptional set of benefits and perspectives:

1. Renewals or PR

Renewals or PR Before the initial EP period (1-2 years) expires, the holder can apply for renewal and extend EP for another 2-3 years. Mandatory conditions for renewal are not only the reality of being hired by your employer, but also meeting a suit of criteria proving that you are worth the position you occupy. As these requirements can change from time to time, it’s crucial to get prepared for every renewal procedure carefully and involve pro visa help to ensure you still fit the requirements. Having your renewal rejected means you may lose your job, and so you must approach renewals seriously.

Each renewal gives you another 2-3 years in the country, so you can go through renewals consistently until you reach your retirement age. But there is a smarter opportunity for you that will set you free from your renewal challenges forever – Permanent Residency. The permanent visa gives you limitless right to stay in SG and leverage almost all perks the native Singaporeans have: more freedom in buying property and doing business, better education for your kids, high-end health care, retirement fund and many others. Foreign workers holding Singapore Employment Pass can initiate their permanent visa processing soon after they obtain their employment visa; however, some criteria (for example providing salary slips for half a year) require better strategizing and waiting. The perfect time of applying for PR will depend on your pass’ type. For P1, waiting for a year or so is enough, while for P2 at least 2 years are needed. Q1 holders might have to go through the renewal procedure at least once to qualify for PR. The perfect applying time for PR is unique for every holder of foreign Employment Pass; that’s why we encourage you to seek for expert visa advice before brewing a PR application on your own. Rejections will badly impact your profile. Don’t risk becoming a Singapore permanent resident!

2. Bring Your Family to SG

Bring Your Family to SGOverseas employees that hold EP can have their families accompany them in the country. However, this privilege depends on the type of E Pass: the “higher” your pass is, the more perks your family members have. Holders of P1, who need to command a salary starting from S$8,000, can bring their legal spouses, kids and relatives (including parents). Holders of P2 whose salary must range from S$4,500 and S$8,000 are able to take the members of their family with, but except parents. Holders of Q1, whose salary must start from S$3,300, have to qualify as sponsors for taking their nears and dears with: their salary must be at least S$4,000.

3. Start Your Own Business

Start Your Own BusinessA foreigner can set up business in Singapore being an E Pass holder. Schemes of establishing business are very simple in Singapore: with pro help you can have your own company incorporated in 2 working days. Once you live in Singapore under EP, your company must have at least one Singaporean director (who is either a permanent resident or a citizen); later, you can replace this director when you have your own permanent visa. If the company is already incorporated, a foreign director that lives overseas must apply for EP if he wants to relocate his work to his own company in Singapore.
Nevertheless, for getting an approval the firm has to provide a proof of its business activity to ensure that the revenues are enough to pay a high director salary. Setting up a firm under EP requires knowing SG incorporation policy and visa shades. It’s important to rely on an expert that possesses expertise in both incorporation & visa matters. Our visa agency has abundant experience in business establishing, and therefore we are able to come up with a strategy that will be advantageous for your new business.
Processing a foreign Employment Pass is never easy because you must meet a bunch of criteria and the government’s expectations. Singapore is sated with foreign manpower (talented and not very), and now it’s time of picky approach and strategizing. Singapore willingly gives employment visas to professionals who know a thing or two in sectors which are crucial for the development of Singaporean economy, for example, finance, electronics, or manufacturing. The government looks for skills that would support the local potential, but not compete with it. In 2013, Singaporean manpower authorities introduced new rules of hiring foreign labor force. Called “Fair Consideration Framework,” these rules protect the right of local talents to be considered for a job position before it is offered to an overseas worker. The authorities will examine every EP applicant to ensure this foreigner is really indispensable and his job can’t be done by his local colleague. The government regularly updates the list of asked-for skills. Fitting this list dramatically increases foreign employee’s chances in obtaining the Employment Pass.
Education is another keystone of lucky EP processing. Bearing the title of the most educated labor force in the world, the Singaporeans have the same rigid expectations to their foreign fellow workers. Your educational qualifications (diploma or degree) weigh heavily, but still don’t guarantee an approval for you.
Before you apply for EP, contact our visa experts for this skill-list and other criteria and pass a brief qualifying test. Passing this assessment, which is free of charge, you will know your weak and strong points. Awareness of your eligibility helps you to be ahead of the game and prepare to application more purposively. A piece of pro visa advice you get at our assessment test will boost your fighting chances and spare your strength & time and on your way to employment in SG.


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