Singapore’s burgeoning economy and high standard of living attract many people who want to migrate here however, it can be quite difficult to get a PR as described here
Singapore has consistently been ranked as one of the world’s top countries in terms of quality of living. The city-state has rightly been proclaimed as Asia’s business headquarters and the continent’s best place to live, work, play and many more.
You see, in the past, before the years 2008 to 2009, getting one in Singapore was not difficult at all for many people, and it almost felt like you did not need any effort at all whatsoever to get it. This is what some call as the heyday of the ‘open door’ policy, and there was a huge influx of people into Singapore.
Many people got the permanent resident status and bought multiples homes in Singapore as investment properties, or bought holiday houses in Singapore. Most of them never worked or ran a business in the country, and some argue there was zero contribution to the society in general by these people. However, since they bought multiple homes, and so many people got permanent residency in a short period of time, this caused local house prices to shoot up multiple folds, and that is why the prices of houses increased very significantly the periods prior to 2009.
The Singapore government and ICA, sensing unhappiness from the citizens and existing permanent residents due to this rapidly rising cost of living without a respective increase in standard of living, took action by not only introducing property cooling measures which felt relatively useless, but took a firm action against the number of new PR granted yearly to new applicants to curb this rising cost.
Another reason for the amount of PR to be granted to foreigners yearly decreased is because of political reasons as well. There were many new permanent residents who only hired foreigners over locals exclusively at companies, and therefore, while the economy grew in general, few locals benefitted at all. To appease the citizens and assimilated PRs, the ICA and the Singapore government realized that the only fast way to solve this issue was to be stricter on the acceptance of new applications.
Despite these difficulties, many people still apply for it yearly, as the Singapore permanent residency offers lots of benefits to those who hold it.
The pre-existing conditions for processing of each application takes into consideration many factors: individual’s work experience, qualifications and age, among others. Additionally, the ability to integrate into the local community is also an important aspect of the application. If you want to live and work in Singapore, you will need to show that you can fit in. Any factor which is lacking could very well see the application prove to be unsuccessful.
There is definitely a shift of ensuring that the immigrants who come into Singapore are classified as foreign talents. Foreign talent basically means individuals who have the ability to contribute greatly to Singapore through their previous work experience or educational background. Obviously, foreign talent would have the greater edge over foreign workers in that they would be first choice in being granted opportunity to apply for PR and even opt for citizenship if they choose to.
Although being a PR does come with its own benefits, the government is also hastening to ensure that Singaporean citizens are not left out in the cold. Natural born citizens will be given priority over non-citizens. While this does not necessarily mean that the processing of PR applications will be affected, the trend could be that more policies would be put in place to ensure that there are distinct differences between citizens and non-citizens.
On the other hand, this does not mean you should give up on your skilled visa application to Singapore. Spend some time obtaining information from sites, forums and portals and you will find the expat community here a good resource.
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Further, you also need to consider of moving your assets to Singapore to demonstrate your commitment however it can be complicated as its involve cross border tax issue. You might be unaware of your tax residence status, how to avoid double taxation and yearly tax reporting requirements. Let our experienced tax consultant assists you in your international tax planning to lower down your overall tax position. For further information on relocation tax planning, please refer to the following useful links:
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Contact Apply For Singapore for consultation on the different visas available to foreigners.