The new work pass Singapore introduced for foreign technology professionals provides flexibility as it is tied personally to them.
But what does this mean? The holder of the new work pass, or the so-called Tech Pass, can move between roles and companies with ease. This is different from the Employment Pass, which is under a specific job and employer.
This feature of the special visa program for foreign tech talents, experts, and business leaders is seen to encourage them to move to Singapore and pursue a job or establish a business. Such is needed as Singapore ramps up efforts to further the technology sector in the country.
In January next year, the government will make five hundred passes available. The Singaporean government looks for tech talents who have an excellent career track to bring innovation to the sector.
Singapore as an Attractive Destination
Before Singapore introduced Tech Pass, it has been rolling out initiatives already to promote the technology sector. In fact, the country has positioned itself to be one of the go-to markets for tech firms and talents.
First of all, the country is in a strategic location in Asia, and its infrastructure links the two sides of the world. According to a study by a research firm, cities in China are the most connected to Singapore. It is followed by New York and Sydney.
Singapore also benefits from 22 bilateral and regional free trade agreements. Among the biggest deals that Singapore signed are the European Union-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (EUSFTA) and the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). This opens the country to many potential partnerships in different fields, including technology.
The country proves it is digital trade and data-friendly as well. It promotes the ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Frameworks Initiative, which is aimed at placing formal legal policies and standards for e-commerce and digital money, among others. The country's existing national trade platform links importers, exporters, banks, logistics firms, customs, shipping agents, and other stakeholders.
Apart from this, the government earmarked $19 billion for its Research, Innovation, and Enterprise 2020 Plan. This program aims to promote advanced manufacturing and engineering, digital economy and services, biomedical sciences, and sustainable urban solutions.
With the introduction of Tech Pass, the technology sector in Singapore is only expected to even flourish.
What are the Opportunities Awaiting Tech Pass Holders?
While applying for the work pass, you have to reach out to the Singapore Economic Development Board. The pass has a validity of two years. It allows the work pass holder to do the following:
- establish and run one or more tech firms
- be employed in one or more local companies at any given time
- become an employer or an entrepreneur in the technology field
- serve as a consultant or mentor
- provide lectures in universities in Singapore
- become an investor in one or more Singapore-based firms
- serve as a director in one or more local companies
- sponsor stay for spouse, children, and parents in Singapore
- renew the pass for another two years when criteria are met
Apart from Singapore, other countries in the region also provide a special visa to attract more tech talents.
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