Singapore has always been a very popular destination for immigrants. Singaporean passport holders can enjoy visa free travel to 189 countries. Its elementary and secondary education is world-renowned, and higher education ranks first in Asia, which is very suitable for families with kids. Singapore is a world-class financial center and the most business-friendly country in Asia. In addition, its public security and medical conditions also has a global reputation. Most prominently, Singapore is a famous tax haven. All these advantages have made Singapore a more and more appealing place for immigrants.
For entrepreneurs or high-quality talents, the best way to get a Singapore PR is to first obtain an Employment Pass (EP), which is a work permit generally held by foreigners in Singapore. In order to meet the manpower needs of economic development and create more and better job opportunities in Singapore, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) regularly updates the minimum salary bar for EP. The following are the important changes about the qualifying salary of Singapore EP in the past 5 years:
The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has raised the minimum salary bar before they can apply for visas for spouses, children and parents. From Sept 1, they must earn at least $5,000 a month if they want to apply for Dependant Pass (DP) for their spouses and children to join them in Singapore. This is up from the previous $4,000.
Those who want to bring their parents to Singapore on Long Term Visit Pass (LTVP) face an even higher minimum salary bar of $10,000 a month, up from $8,000.
From 1 January 2017, the qualifying salary for EP applications has been raised from $3,300 to $3,600. This change is part of the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) regular update of the EP qualifying salary to keep pace with local wage increases, in order to maintain the quality of our foreign workforce and enhance their complementarity to the local workforce.
MOM’s manpower policy framework is designed to meet the manpower needs of the economy, so that businesses can stay competitive and grow, and ultimately create more and better jobs in Singapore. The previous minimum EP qualifying salary update was in Jan 2014, from $3,000 to $3,300.
With effect from 1 January 2017, only new EP applicants who can command a monthly salary of $3,600 or more, subject to meeting other criteria on qualifications and experience, will be considered. Those with more years of experience are also required to command higher salaries commensurate with their work experience and skill sets.
From 1 January 2018, the minimum fixed monthly salary required for EP holders in Singapore to bring in family members on DP has been increased to $6,000. This is an increase of 20% from the previous qualifying salary of $5,000.
In addition, EP holders must meet a minimum fixed monthly salary to bring in their parents on LTVP has been increased to $12,000. This is also an increase of 20% from the previous qualifying salary of $10,000.
From 1 May 2020, the minimum qualifying salary will be raised from $3,600 to $3,900 for new applications. The salary criteria for senior and more experienced candidates will also be raised in tandem. The new salary criteria will apply to renewal applications from 1 May 2021.
These updates can ensure the quality of foreign workers, reasonably match the rise in local salaries, and enhance their complementarity with local labor. However, it also raised the threshold for Singapore's EP application, making it more difficult to obtain. In addition, Singapore's election is about to begin, and immigration policies are likely to be tightened at that time, such as prolonged review period or more stringent document requirements, all these changes are possible. So now is the golden time to immigrate to Singapore!
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