Singapore: New Work Pass for Technology Industry to Launch in 2021

November 17, 2020 Lucy Halse

Key Points

  • Singapore will launch a new work pass called Tech.Pass in 2021
  • The work pass allows individuals to invest, start and run a business, and give lectures
  • Certain qualifying criteria apply, including minimum salary and experience requirements
  • Tech.Pass has a two-year validity with the opportunity for extensions
  • Tech.Pass has shorter application processing time than other Singapore work authorization programs

Overview

On January 1, 2021, certain foreign nationals in the technology industry can apply for a new work pass called Tech.Pass. Tech.Pass allows qualified individuals to operate a business and perform certain business activities in Singapore.

Who is Eligible?

The upcoming pass provides a new pathway for a select group of highly skilled foreign nationals into Singapore. Tech.Pass permits certain business activities including investing in companies, starting or running a business, lecturing at higher education institutions, and more.

What are the Requirements?

To be eligible for Tech.Pass, foreign nationals must meet the following requirements:

  • Gross monthly salary of SGD 20,000
  • Five years’ cumulative experience in a leading role of a technology firm with a market capitalization or value of at least USD 500 million or USD 30 million funding
  • Five years’ cumulative experience in a leading role in developing a technology product with at least 100,000 monthly users or a minimum of USD 100 million in revenue

Tech.Pass also has provisions for duration of stay, including:

  • A two-year validity and possible extension of two more years based on eligibility
  • Foreign nationals may apply for an extension if they earned at least SGD 240,000 in income during their initial two-year pass validity
  • Individuals can also apply for an extension if they can prove a pending total annual business revenue of SGD 100,000 or more

What Should Employers and Applicants Know?

The two-year validity associated with Tech.Pass is similar to the duration of many work authorization programs in Singapore, but it will have a faster application processing time.


Content in this publication is not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an Envoy-affiliated attorney or another qualified professional.

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