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Obtain a Residence Permit in Singapore - Updated for 2021

Obtain a Residence Permit in Singapore

Updated on Thursday 17th June 2021

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Obtain-a-Residence-Permit-in-SingaporeTypes of residence permits in Singapore in 2021 

Singapore provides several types of visas for foreign citizens coming to the country depending on their purpose. Foreign citizens may become Singapore permanent residents through different schemes that allow them to work or invest in the city-state. Most foreigner apply for the permanent residence visa after working for few years in Singapore, but there are also other schemes foreign citizens may obtain residency. Once the residence permit is attained, a foreigner will enjoy most of the benefits as any other national, among which the right to buy a property in Singapore.

The residence scheme for foreigners working in Singapore

Singapore has developed a residence scheme through which foreign citizens working in the country may apply for a residence permit. The Professionals or Technical Personnel and Skilled Worker Scheme (PTS Scheme), as it is referred to, allows foreign professionals working in Singapore to obtain permanent residence. The most important requirement to qualify for the PTS Scheme is to have an employment pass at the time of the application. The applicant must be working in a Singapore company for six months before applying for the residence permit.

The immigration procedures in Singapore for those who need to obtain a residence permit have generally not changed in 2021, but new procedures may apply and this is why we recommend you to address to our team of lawyers for in-depth advice on the applicable rules. For instance, starting 1 May 2021, persons who are the owners of a Dependant Pass will need to comply with specific qualifications requirements in order to be eligible for employment; our team of lawyers in Singapore can offer further advice. 

The Singapore permanent residence scheme for investors

Foreign investors benefit from a dedicated Singapore residence scheme. They can apply for a residence permit through the Global Investor Programme (GIP Scheme) which will allow them to start a business in Singapore or make other investments in the country. There are two options for foreign investors applying for residence permits in Singapore:

  • - they must invest at least 2.5 million SGD in a start-up or in an existing company,
  • - they must invest at least 2.5 million SGD in a Singapore Global Investor Programme fund.

Additionally, foreign investors coming to Singapore must also submit proof of a good business background and an achievable investment plan. Foreign investors must also meet certain criteria referring to the annual turnover of the companies they own. In order to comply with the GIP Scheme requirements they must submit annual financial statements for the last three years.

For complete information about eligibility criteria for the residence permits, please contact our lawyers in Singapore.