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The Different Visa Schemes in Singapore

A leading financial and business hub in Southeast Asia, Singapore continues to attract investors and foreign talent from all over the world with its open immigration policies. How can an entrepreneur or a working professional stay legally in the country? What are the many Singapore work visa schemes available for them? Let’s take a look.

employment pass visa Singapore

The EP or the Employment Pass is the primary kind of work permit that is given to skilled employees or company workers who will be making a living in Singapore. They are required to have a fixed monthly salary of at least $3,900 and the good news is that there is no official quota system that limits the number of EPs a company can issue.

  • People who are eligible for EP are those who are company owners or professional staff with relevant experience and tertiary education.
  • The EP is valid for one to two years and can be easily renewed as long as the applicant continues working for the same company.
  • There is no quota system for EPs.
  • Those who have EPs are able to apply for permanent residence or PR.

A special type of Employment Pass, the Personalised Employment Pass or PEP, it is not tied to one particular employer. One of the biggest benefits of having this type of work visa is that it allows the pass holder to switch employers without having to reapply for a new work visa, as long as unemployment is shorter than six months. However, individuals with this Singapore work visa won’t be able to start their own companies and the government is quite strict with the eligibility requirements.

  • The PEP is for professionals who earn high salaries who want to work in Singapore for an employer but they are unable to start their own business.
  • The PEP is valid for three years and is not renewable.
  • There is no quota system for PEP.
  • Holders of the PEP work visa are eligible to apply for permanent residence or PR
entrepreneur visa singapore

A variation of the Employment Pass, the EntrePass is a visa for owners of newly incorporated companies in Singapore, who wish to relocate to the country to operate their business.

  • The EntrePass is for people who wish to incorporate a new company or people who have just recently incorporated a new company in less than six months. The business must fulfill one of the criteria introduced in 2013.
  • The EntrePass is initially issued with 1-year validity and is renewable for as long as the business is viable.
  • There is no quota system for EntrePass.
  • Holders of the EntrePass work visa are eligible to apply for permanent residence or PR.
S-pass technician

The S Pass is for mid-skilled individuals who earn at least $2,200. The applications for this type of Singapore work visa is based on the quota eligibility of the company and the qualifications of the applicant.

  • The S Pass is for mid-level technical staff.
  • The S Pass is initially issued for either one or two years but is renewable for as long as the applicant remains with the employer.
  • There is a quota system for S Pass holders. For more information, please refer to this computation for quote balance.
  • Holders of the S Pass are eligible to apply for permanent residence or PR
Singapore Lion city merlion

These are categories of people who can pretend to a right of becoming Singapore permanent residents: expats working on PEP, EP and S Pass, entrepreneurs working on EntrePass, investors, artists, spouses and children of permanent residents and Singapore citizens as well as elderly parents of the citizens. Different schemes imply specific requirements:

  • Getting PR through the working visa is the most popular way. Expats (PEP/EP/S Pass holders) are officially required to submit salary slips for a 6-month period they have worked in Singapore, but the “qualifying” period varies for different work visas: P1 (EP) and PEP holders have the shortest qualifying period (up to a year) while S Pass holders might need years of work history in Singapore for qualifying. The authorities don’t share the exact periods for each work pass, but our experience allows us to faultlessly assess your chances for PR, prepare the candidate’s employment profiles beforehand and strategize a timely PR application. The same refers to the holders of the Entrepreneur visa.
  • Investors and their families are granted the status of PR right after making the minimum investment of 2,500,000 SGD. This money infusion can be made in several destinations: a new or already operating business or a Global Investor Programme Fund.
  • Overseas artists seeking a permanent ground their talents are required to make an outstanding contribution to Singapore’s culture, boast remarkable mastery within their niche, be popular in their own country (or even worldwide) and have a vision how their talent helps to upgrade the local culture.
Incorporation in Singapore is a brief procedure of business registration with the ACRA following a competent strategizing of staff relocation, tax planning and paperwork within one of the available business entities. With only 1 SGD in the pocket, you can have your company incorporated in 1 day! Thanks to efforts of Singapore government and its pro-business position, the procedure of setting up a Singapore company was streamlined and modernized to stamp out any corruption and red tape. But despite the ease of the procedure, it shouldn’t be done slapdash as there are lots of factors that should be taken into account. That’s why it’s essential that you get a piece of pro advice for your decision and a competent assistance on the go.
Singapore Work permit construction work
 

The Work Permit is a Singapore work pass that allows semi-skilled or unskilled workers from an approved list of countries to work in certain sectors in Singapore. Depending on your company sector, you are given certain quota to hire this group of foreign employee.