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Singaporean is Prohibited from Holding Dual Citizenship
Dual citizenship is disallowed in Singapore. Citizenship is a sense of belonging for an individual to a country, implying loyalty to the country at all times. Citizens of countries around the world enjoy the benefits of being part and parcel of the country they were born, bred and reside in. That said, when opportunities arise, individuals will decide to leave their home country for greener pastures.
What is the Reason People Prefer to Live & Work in Singapore
Singapore is a land of wealth and continuous prosperity. It is ranked among the top ten of world’s safest country and the top 3 world’s most prosperous country based on GDP, no wonder why Singapore has become a haven for foreigners to work and reside in. Singapore has been welcoming foreigners from all over the world as it governs with zero tolerance for corruption, thus, making Singapore a melting pot of foreigners, both business owners and workers.
Hence, foreigners working and residing in Singapore may opt for Singapore permanent resident status in Singapore. This is so that they can still enjoy acquiring wealth while doing business in Singapore, yet maintain their home country citizenship.
As much as they can settle down in Singapore as a permanent resident, there are still plenty of benefits only meant for Singapore citizens. Thus, it gets tricky here. To obtain Singapore citizenship, a foreigner will have to renounce their home country citizenship. Dual citizenship is not allowed in Singapore. The same goes for Singaporeans abroad.
Renunciation of Singaporean Citizenship
The concern of allowing dual citizenship for Singapore residents, primarily citizen by descent or naturalised is that these new foreign Singapore citizens may leave Singapore as they please during trying times since they are still holding on to their native citizenship. Though they can leave the country at any time while not holding Singapore citizenship, the government is not concerned for permanent residents as they are free to do so. But, being a citizen of two countries means that there is no absolute loyalty or sense of belonging to either or.
As for Singaporeans abroad, they are to renounce Singapore citizenship when they accept the citizen status offered by the country they live in currently. This may cause difficulty for them in the future should they opt to return to Singapore for good, there is the hassle of the process of obtaining Singapore citizenship, while by birth or descent they were originally Singaporeans. Otherwise, they will be regarded as foreigners in their homeland if they have renounced Singapore citizenship for another country’s citizenship.
Having said that, children born outside of Singapore to at least one Singaporean parent should register with the Singapore consulate to obtain Singapore citizenship by descent. However, these children must renounce their foreign citizenship by age 21. Should the parent insist on keeping foreign nationality, then the government of Singapore will deprive them of Singapore citizenship.
Historically and culturally, Singapore believes that an individual should only be loyal to one country, thus being a proud unofficial ambassador for Singapore wherever they may be. That said, foreigners who have contributed significantly to growth and expansion for Singapore may opt to obtain Singapore citizenship to foster their settlement in the country further. Hence, dual citizenship will not work until there are global circumstances that demand it. Till then, pick and choose wisely.