singapore new expat visa

Singapore announces a new expat visa to lure global talent

Singapore have created a new work permit, the Overseas Networks and Expertise (ONE) pass, to encourage expats with specialist skills to consider emigrating to Singapore, to encourage their economic growth in the wake of the years impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

According to Minister of Manpower Tan See Leng, Singapore won’t limit the number of applicants for this newest work permit as the city-state seeks to improve its appeal to the world’s brightest minds. The introduction of the ONE pass, as well as other steps that make it easier to hire expats, is a response to the tight labour market. 

With this pass, Singapore plans to bring in leaders in fields across science, technology, engineering, and math, as well as finance, arts, culture and sports.  

The ONE pass is a visa that will allow its holders, as well as their partners, to work for five years. This represents Singapore’s renewed effort to lure global talent after its pandemic-era restrictions and efforts to protect local workers made it appear less welcoming.  

As economies reopen and find growth still stuttering, nations (including the UK, the United Arab Emirates, Germany, and Thailand) are seeking out top achievers to power their recovery by providing easier access. 

The minister suggested the government was willing to pull out all stops to support growth, as he addressed the issue of accommodating LGBTQ+ workers and their partners to live and work in the city-state, saying it would not be a hurdle to allowing entry of leaders in the identified fields. 

The Ministry of Manpower said they will make four enhancements to Singapore’s work pass framework to better attract top talent and experienced tech professionals in fields where there is a dearth of skilled labour. 

The minister also added that staying open and connected to the world is fundamental to Singapore’s success as a global city and business hub. 

Here are some important features of the new ONE pass: 

  • It is a personalised 5-year work pass that provides employment flexibility.
  • Applicants will need to earn a fixed monthly salary of $30,000 and above, comparable to the top 5% of Employment Pass (EP) holders.
  • Individuals with outstanding achievements across the arts and culture, sports, science and technology, and research and academia, can also qualify, even if they may not meet the salary criterion.
  • Pass holders can concurrently start, operate, and work for multiple companies in Singapore at any one time.
  • Their spouses will be able to work on a Letter of Consent.
  • The pass holders will not be subject to the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) job advertising requirement and the upcoming Complementarity Assessment Framework (COMPASS).
  • The pass is renewable for 5 years each time, subject to the candidate meeting eligibility criteria for renewal

If you would like to learn more about additional key facts, eligibility and passes for families of this new expat visa, please follow this link.