The Singapore Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has updated several of its work pass policies.

Starting September 1, 2020, the minimum salary requirement will increase to $4,500 for all new Employment Pass (EP) applicants. The minimum qualifying salaries will also increase for older, more experienced EP candidates who are in their 40s. The minimum qualifying salary for older applicants will be approximately twice as much as the minimum salary requirements for younger applicants. The new salary requirement will take effect for renewal applicants on May 1, 2021.

The new salary criteria described above will affect new EP applicants in the financial services sector starting on September 1, 2020. However, on December 1, 2020, the minimum qualifying salary for new EP applicants in the financial services sector will further increase to $5,000. The qualifying salary for older, more experienced EP candidates in their 40s will increase to approximately twice the minimum qualifying salary for younger applicants. The new $5000 salary requirement will take effect for renewal applications on May 1, 2021.

Minimum salary requirements will also increase for S Pass applicants. The minimum salary for S Pass applicants will increase from $2,400 to $2,500. Qualifying salaries will be greater for older S Pass candidates with more experience. The new S Pass salary requirements will apply to new applications starting October 1, 2020, and to renewal applicants beginning May 1, 2021. Quotas and levies will remain unchanged for S Pass applicants.

Along with increasing minimum salary requirements, MOM will use more stringent criteria for evaluating S and EP applications. MOM will emphasize employers’ use of local Professional, Managers, Executives, and Technicians (PMETS), and it will evaluate employers’ responsiveness to government initiatives for employers to train and recruit more PMETs from Singapore. MOM will also assess whether the employer has discriminated against eligible Singaporeans.

Job advertising requirements will apply to S Pass applications submitted on October 1, 2020 and after. Employers must make greater efforts to hire local candidates under the new requirement, and local candidates will have greater awareness of vacancies in mid-skilled positions. Additionally, the minimum job advertisement duration for S Pass and EP applications will increase from 14 days to 28 days on October 1, 2020. Employers who are deemed biased against local hires will be placed on a Watchlist, and their applications will be further scrutinized.


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