TECH PASS Singapore SCHEME
Everything You Need to Know About Tech Pass Singapore
The Singapore Tech Pass is a type of work visa which was launched in January 2021 by the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB). The aim of this tech pass is to attract global tech talents (e.g. tech entrepreneurs, leaders or technical experts) from around the world to Singapore to strengthen Singapore as a technology sector. In addition, this tech.pass scheme gives the visa holder greater flexibility by allowing him/her to either operate their own business, work for multiple Singapore-based tech companies or provide mentorship to local startups. Read further to understand more about the criteria and benefits of the visa.
What is a Tech Pass?
Tech pass is a new Singapore work pass scheme (issued by the EDB) that permits established Technology leaders, experts and entrepreneurs to come to Singapore to introduce and implement innovative Tech ideas. The aim is to attract foreign technology experts or tech talents to help contribute to the vibrant technology economy of Singapore.
Additionally, this tech pass has a 2 years validity period upon issuance. You are allowed to extend the visa for additional 2 years if you meet the renewal criteria which will be discussed later.
Unlike other work passes, the Tech Pass is like the hybrid of the Employment Pass and Entrepass scheme which gives the flexibility for the tech pass holder to be employed by a company and/or operate their own startup business.
The below tables shows the different between each work passes in Singapore.
|Employment Pass (EP)
|Personalised Employment Pass (PEP)
|Company owners Working professionals, executive or specialised roles. Directors and Business Owners
|Entrepreneurs with track records
|High Earning Executives
|Visa Issued Validity
|Issued for 2 years
Renewal Allowed Every 2 years.
|First time issued for 1 - 2 years.
Renewal: 3 years
|First time issued for 1 years.
Renewal: Every year
|First time issued for 3 years.
Not possible to renew
|Fixed monthly salary of at least S$20,000;
See the list of criteria below
|Minimum Fixed monthly salary of at least S$4,500
See list EP Criteria here.
|Applicants Meet the business track records. See the full list of Entrepass Criteria
|Applicants meet the Fixed Salary Criteria of 12,000 18,000 SGD per month. See the full list of PEP criteria here
|Work for more than one employers and can start own business.
|Can only work for one employer or company.
|Can only operate One Company.
|Can work for more than one company but need to meet the minimum salary requirements yearly
How can you benefit from Tech.Pass?
Unlike other work passes, Tech Pass Singapore gives the holder much greater flexibility in participating in many other activities in Singapore. Typically, when you are issued a work pass in Singapore, you are restricted to working for one company and you are not allowed to be both an employee and an entrepreneur concurrently.
With the introduction of the new Tech pass scheme, you are permitted to concurrently carry out the following activities:
1. Setup and run more than one tech company;
2. Work as a salaried employee for more than one Singapore-based tech company concurrently without having to apply for another work pass;
3. Work as a consultant, mentor or lecturer for local tertiary institutions, or become an investor and director in one or more Singapore-based tech companies;
4. Sponsor your spouse children and parents under the dependant’s pass or a long-term visit pass;
5. This visa is issued for 2 years and can be renewed for additional 2 years if you meet the renewal criteria
Eligibility Criteria for Singapore Tech.Pass
If you are a tech talent, you must meet the following criteria and application procedure to get your tech pass.
To get a Singapore Tech Pass, you need to fulfil at least 2 out of the following 3 eligibility criteria:
Criterion 1: Your last drawn fixed monthly salary (in the previous 12 months) should be at least S$20,000 or if you are business owner with an annual income of over S$ 240,000;
Criterion 2: You have more than 5 years of experience in a leading role in a tech company with a market value of at least US$500 million or have at least US$30 million funds raised;
Criterion 3: You have a minimum of five cumulative years of experience in a tech company working in a leading role in the development of a technology with at least 100,000 active users or the product has earned at least an annual revenue of US$100 million.
How to Apply for Tech.Pass in Singapore?
Prepare the following support documents based on the selected criteria:
Criterion 1: Your last drawn fixed monthly salary of S$ 20,000
Provides payslips for the past 3 months, or the latest income tax statements
Criterion 2: five years of experience in a leading role in a tech company with a market value of at least US$500 million or have at least US$30 million funds raised:
Company valuation report, annual report or financial statements, with company valuation highlighted;
Screenshot of valuation via Crunchbase.
Criterion 3: five cumulative years of experience working in a leading role in the development of a technology with at least 100,000 active users or the product has earned at least an annual revenue of US$100 million
Reports showing Product monthly active users;
Screenshots of application download figures
Any other documents showing proof that the product has monthly active users or revenue generated from such products
Complete and sign the required Tech Pass application form;
Make the necessary payment for the visa.
Upload the completed application form and all the support documents.
The processing time is 8 weeks and it can take additional 3 – 4 weeks whenever additional support documents are required for your application.
How to Renew Tech Pass?
You will be allowed to renewal your tech pass for 2 years if you meet the following criteria:
You earned at least S$240,000 in annual income which can consist of salaries and / or business income;
You have spent at least S$100,000 in your total annual business spending and employed at least 1 local PME4 or 3 LQS5 .
Additionally, you must fulfil at least two of the following roles with at least one of them from Column (A):
|1. Founded a company in Singapore, offering a tech-based or tech-enabled product or service
|1. Served on board of directors of a Singapore-based company (which need not be a tech company)
|2. Served a leading role (e.g. CEO, CTO, APAC MD) in a Singapore-based tech company
|2. Acted as advisor/mentor to a Singapore-based start-up
|3. Served a leading role in 2 or more Singapore-based tech companies
|3. Served as professor/lecturer/adjunct professor/adjunct lecturer in a Singapore Institute of Higher Learning (IHL)
|4. Employed in a technical role leading a team in a Singapore-based company, e.g. senior engineer or senior researcher leading a team in a particular tech field
|4. Provided training in some form not covered by B2 or B3 above (e.g. workshops, corporate training classes).
|5. Employed in a technical role leading a team in 2 or more Singapore-based companies
|5. Invested in one or more Singapore-based tech companies
Need further guidance on Your Singapore Visas?
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Need help in your Singapore TECH.PASS?
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There will be 500 places available for applicants upon launch of the Tech.Pass, on a first come first serve basis. The Tech.Pass will be reviewed thereafter to take into consideration the benefits brought to the local tech ecosystem and feedback on the programme from individuals and stakeholders.
8 – 10 weeks
You should submit an appeal for a rejected Tech.Pass application only if you can address the issues in your rejection advisory and you meet the eligibility or renewal criteria.