Singapore – Changes to Employment Pass Application Process

What has changed

Effective October 1, 2015, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has announced a number of changes to the Employment Pass application process, particularly in regards to the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) to ensure Singaporeans are considered for positions advertised on Jobs Bank (government website).

Who is affected?
What to expect

  • All Employment Pass applicants

In order to make the job market more favorable to Singaporean Professionals, Managers, and Executives (PME), the MOM will make the following changes:

Firms will be required to publish the salary range of the job vacancy to the Job Bank.

  • From October 1, 2015, employers who apply for Employment Passes (EP) where the job advertisement did not state a salary range will have their applications rejected.
  • The effective date of October 1st relates to the date the EP application is submitted rather than the date the advert was placed.
  • This change is designed to make the job terms clearer to Singaporean job seekers and improve labor market transparency.

Closer scrutiny will be placed on certain employers who are suspected of having discriminatory nationality-based recruitment practices and lower number of Singaporeans than the industry average. Additional documentary requirements for Employment Pass applications will be required for such employers to check whether Singaporeans were considered fairly.

  • This may include information on the number of applications submitted by Singaporeans, whether Singaporeans were interviewed for the vacancy, and the firm’s current share of Singaporean Professionals, Managers, Executives (PME) positions at various levels.

Additionally, the MOM will closer scrutinize qualifications submitted in support of S Pass and Employment Pass applications.

  • The MOM will reject applications which contain ‘doubtful’ qualifications, such as¬†those obtained from institutions who may have allowed students to ‘study’ at a ‘degree mill’ for payment, in order to obtain the qualification without actually studying for the course in question.

What you need to do
Planning ahead

  • Companies must make salary ranges public when they publish an advert in support of an Employment Pass Application
  • It is also advised to retain information in relation to the recruitment process (such as number of application, CVs, interview notes, reasons for not hiring Singaporeans) in the event that they are asked by the MOM to produce such evidence upon submission of an EP application.
  • Contact your Emigra Worldwide attorney or representative for further details on how these updates may impact you or your client.

The information above was provided by Emigra Worldwide, our global network partners, and relevant government authorities. The information herein is for general purposes only and not intended as advice for a particular matter. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work.

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