Thursday, September 15, 2011

Singapore Employment Pass

To work in Singapore, you need to hold a valid work visa (no matter what duration you would work) and Singapore Employment Pass (EP) is the type of work visa, many foreigner white collar employees hold to live and work in Singapore. Although many of these expatriates hold Employment Pass for few years and leave Singapore, it is also the first step of immigration to Singapore for many future Singapore Permanent Residents and Singapore Citizens.

To get a Singapore Employment Pass, you usually need to find a job in Singapore. I say usually because there is a special kind of Employment Pass called Singapore Personalized Employment Pass (PEP). PEP like EP is
granted by Singapore's Ministry of Manpower (MOM) to eligible foreigners and does not require the pass holder to find an employer in Singapore to apply. a new PEP holder has only 6 months to find an employer upon receiption of PEP or he/she would lose Singapore work visa. Since after losing EP, you can only stay 2 weeks in Singapore, PEP is a popular visa among foreigners, who has just lost their jobs. If you have never been in Singapore before, you are eligible for PEP only if you earn more than 8,000 SGD per month.

There are 3 types of Employment Pass. Q1, P2 and P1. P1 requires a  salary more than 8,000 SGD per month while Q1 requires 2,800 (3,000 from 2012) per month. The approval also depends on many factors. Those applying for jobs which are in high demand have more chance. MOM keeps an skills in demand list of these jobs in its web site.

The academic qualification is an important factor in EP approval. There is a qualified institution list in MOM web page. But if your university is not in that list, you can still get EP with other qualifications you have.

Back in 2006, I have applied first time for EP. My application was rejected in 2 weeks. Since I was here to support Singaporean team of my ex-company for 6 months they needed me to stay 6 months. So they have appealed. 2 weeks later my EP was approved. I handed it back in 2007 and reapplied again in 2008 when I was back in Singapore. Then it was a smooth process.

Not all EP's are approved. MOM has eligibility criteria depending on applicant's education, experience as well as employer's qualifications. Since 2011, the eligibility criteria is more restrict to slow the inflow of foreign workers into Singapore. EP is usually followed by an agency followed by employer so the employee usually do not need to follow the process but need to chase the documents needed. If you are moving to Singapore before your EP is approved, collect every document necessary (or you think may be useful) before coming to Singapore.

1 comment:

  1. Due to the good job opportunities and visa options availability lots of forgieners are interested in getting the Singapore Employment Pass so that they can work in this country and set their carrier here.