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Apply for Singapore PR Permanent Residence in Singapore

Package Fee for Singapore Permanent Residence application | Singapore PR application
Packages Available Fee (SGD)
Application of Singapore Permanent Residence (Singapore PR) From $2,000 (W/GST $2,140)

What are the Pros and Cons to Become Singapore Permanent Residence

As a permanent resident of Singapore, you and your family are free to live, work and buy property in the country and be a part of Singapore society. As a Singapore PR, you are are eligible for a range of perks such the ability to travel in and out of the country freely and priority entry to Singapore’s public education system for your school-going children. In the workplace, your employer is required to make monthly contributions to Central Provident Fund (CPF) scheme, and you do not need to acquire fresh working visas when changing jobs. There are other financial benefits from being a Singapore PR in that you more easily borrow various loans such as a housing loan if you want to buy a property. Besides, permanent residents are allowed to buy second-hand units of government HDB flats (only citizens can purchase new ones).

While you are given many rights as a Singapore PR, the government also has rights upon you. One of them is military service, which is compulsory on your sons (if they are also PRs) once they reach 18. Under the Enlistment Act, all male Singapore citizens and permanent residents are liable to register for national service upon reaching 16 and a half years of age. They must serve two years when they are 18. This is followed by 40 days of Operationally Ready National Service every year until they are 50, for officers, and 40, for other ranks. On average, 500 young men who obtain permanent residence through their parents enter compulsory national service each year.

A Singapore permanent resident’s application takes approximately 3-6 months to process and is open to those under 50 who had been living and working in Singapore for at least six months and, in certain cases, foreigners who are not physically residing in the island-state.

Permanent residence also opens the door to full Singapore citizenship, should you wish one day to take on Singapore nationality. It may take two or more years, but it is the only path to obtaining a Singapore passport apart from being born to a Singapore citizen.

How to Become Singapore Permanent Residence

There are two options to become a Singapore Permanent Resident: the Global Investor Program (GIP Scheme) or Professionals/Technical Personnel & Skilled Worker Scheme (PTS Scheme).

Quick links

Global Investor Program (GIP Scheme)
Professionals/Technical Personnel & Skilled Worker Scheme (PTS Scheme)
Renewal of Singapore PR


Global Investor Program (GIP Scheme)

Singapore permanent residence can be bought if you are willing to invest a small fortune in the country and support your funds with proven entrepreneurial skills. This particular scheme, officially known as the Global Investor Program (GIP Scheme), is often referred to as the Investor Scheme and requires you to invest at least S$2.5 million in order to qualify under the scheme.

If your plan is to relocate to Singapore and you have sufficient funds to spare, the Investor Scheme is the shortest route to permanent residence in Singapore. Your investment in Singapore economy is valuable because it will generate economic spin-offs and create employment. Singapore’s business-friendly policies, relatively low taxes, modern infrastructure, safety and clean environment have always been a lure for foreign investors looking to relocate.

You can use investment funds to either launch a new enterprise or beef-up an existing one in Singapore. You must also prove to authorities that you have what it takes to make a business succeed, both in terms of your experience and how you plan to go about it. The Singapore Government often acts as the link in finding suitable partnerships between foreign investors and local business networks.

Corporate managers holding the position of Chairman, CEO, CFO, CTO, etc. who have more than 10 years of experience in a company with annual revenue of at least S$100 million may also apply for GIP.

Investment Options under GIP Scheme
At present, under the Investor Scheme, you can choose either of the following investment options:

  1. Option A: Invest at least S$2.5 million in a new business startup or expansion of an existing business operation.
  2. Option B: Invest at least S$2.5 million in a GIP-approved fund that invests in Singapore-based companies.

Note however that you need more than money to earn your permanent residence status through the Investor Scheme. You must prove to the authorities that you have an entrepreneurial flair by showing a good track record and furnishing a credible business proposal or investment plan.

Eligibility Criteria

Assessment Criteria for Option A Applicants

In order to qualify for the GIP Scheme you must:

  • Meet the minimum investment requirement of S$2.5 million in a new business start-up or expansion of an existing business operation;
  • Possess at least three years of business or entrepreneurial track record;
  • Submit audited financial statements of your company for the last three years;
  • Have at least 30 percent shareholding in the company if it is privately owned;
  • Submit a three-year business/investment plan with employment and annual financial projections;
  • Ensure that your existing business meets the following turnover requirements:
    1. For companies in the real estate or construction-related industries: A minimum of S$200 million in the most recent year and at least S$200 million per annum on average for the last three years.
    2. For companies in other business sectors: A minimum of S$50 million in the most recent year and at least S$50 million per annum on average for the last three years.

If you own more than one business, you must submit the financial statements of the company which has the highest turnover. You are free to consolidate your businesses in order to meet the minimum annual turnover criteria. Authorities will also take into account the following factors:

  • Your role and position in the company.
  • The profitability of your company.

Note that you must meet the employment and financial milestones that you have set in your business/investment plan at the end of a three-year period.

Assessment Criteria for Option B Applicants

In order to qualify for the GIP Scheme you must:

  • Meet the minimum investment requirement of S$2.5 million in a GIP-approved fund that invests in Singapore-based companies.;
  • Possess at least three years of business or entrepreneurial track record;
  • Submit audited financial statements of your company for the last three years;
  • Have at least 30percent shareholding in the company if it is privately owned;
  • Ensure that your existing business meets the following turnover requirements:
    • For companies in the real estate or construction-related industries: A minimum of S$200 million in the most recent year and at least S$200 million per annum on average for the last three years.
    • For companies in other business sectors: A minimum of S$50 million in the most recent year and at least S$50 million per annum on average for the last three years.

If you own more than one business, you must submit the financial statements of the company which has the highest turnover. You are free to consolidate your businesses in order to meet the minimum annual turnover criteria. Authorities will also take into account:

  • Your role and position in the company.
  • The profitability of your company.

Approved Business Sectors for the GIP Scheme
You can choose to invest in any of the following business sectors under the GIP scheme:

  • Biomedical
  • Healthcare services
  • Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology
  • Medical technology
  • Alternative energy
  • Education
  • Professional services
  • Electronics including electronic components, electronics systems, and semiconductors
  • Chemicals
  • Engineering services
  • Energy
  • Environment technology
  • Media and entertainment
  • Telecommunication
  • Information technology
  • Philanthropy including NGOs, NPOs, etc.
  • Lifestyle and sports including art galleries, museums, auction houses, art logistics, art theatres, production houses, sports academies, headquarters of sports companies, etc
  • New technology such as intelligent systems, nanotechnology, new-technology enables industries, etc.
  • Logistics
  • Precision Engineering
  • Transport engineering including aerospace, marine, land, oil and gas
  • New technologies including intelligent systems, nanotechnology, etc.

Permanent Residence for Family
At present, under the GIP permanent residence scheme, you can also apply for permanent residence for your family members as per the below guidelines:

  • Your spouse and children 21 years and under are eligible to apply for PR under your PR application. Male dependents will be liable for National Service.
  • Your children who are over 21 years and parents are eligible to apply for the five-year Long Term Social Visit Pass (LTSVP), which is renewable and tied to the validity of your re-entry permit.

Application Procedure
The following documents will be required for PR application under Investor Scheme:

  • Form A: Application for Permanent Residence for Investors
  • Form B: Proposed Investment Plan
  • Undertaking on the Terms & Conditions of the Program
  • Form 4: Application for An Entry Permit to Enter Singapore
  • Other supporting documents, if applicable

Note that officially endorsed translated versions must be provided for any non-English documents.

It will take three to six months to process the application. If your application is approved (after an interview with the authorities), you will be issued an Approval-in-Principle PR which is valid for six months, during which you will be required to make your investment. Documentary evidence of your investment such as share certificates and title deeds will need to be submitted to and withheld by authorities for five years. Once these documents have been received, you will be conferred PR status.

Once you have cleared all the hurdles and have received the blue identity card given to all Singapore permanent residents, you can start contributing to the country’s economy. You will also benefit by being able to reside in the country visa-free, enjoy tax relief and education subsidies for your children and many other rights and privileges given to full citizens of Singapore.

If you qualify for the GIP scheme based on the above information, please email us at 3e@3ecpa.com.sg your profile and Profit & Loss Statement for the past three years for a quick evaluation. Upon evaluation, we will contact you on the necessary GIP application proceedings.

Professionals/Technical Personnel & Skilled Worker Scheme (PTS Scheme)

Singapore Permanent Application Filing for Individuals Holding an Employment Pass or Entrepreneur Pass.

Specifically, the scheme is known as Professionals/Technical Personnel & Skilled Worker Scheme (or simply as PTS Scheme). Among the available PR schemes, more than 90 percent families gain Singapore PR through the PTS Scheme.

In order to apply for permanent residence under the PTS Scheme, you must be a Work Pass holder of Type P, Q or S. You should also be under 50 years old, although exceptions can be made on a case by case basis. The PTS Scheme allows you to include your spouse and unmarried children under-21 years of age in your application as well. The procedure to acquire Singapore permanent residence through PTS Scheme is straightforward though it requires research, leg-work and attention to detail.

The following step-by-step guide will help you to tackle the Singapore PR application process with much ease and confidence.

Step 1: Decide when to apply for PR
The first question that typically comes to the mind of majority of the work pass holders: when can I apply for my Singapore PR? Theoretically, you can apply for Singapore permanent residence the day you start working in the country as an EP holder. However, one of the requirements is to provide salary slips that go back six months from your Singapore employer which means should wait at least six months.

In practical terms, how soon you can apply for PR status also depends on the type of work pass you are holding and the unofficial annual quota set by the government. If you are holding a P1 pass, your chances of approval are high if you apply after one year. If you are holding a P2 pass, you are likely to have a good chance if you apply after two years. If on the other hand, you are holding a Q or S pass, it’s recommended that you apply after three years to have a decent chance of approval. Also, make sure you are in good terms with your employer at the time of filing your PR application. One of the sections in the application form is to be completed by the employer.

Step 2: Think about your chances of approval
Besides the type of work pass you hold and how soon you apply for PR, there are few other factors that are taken into consideration by authorities when deciding on your PR application. They include:

  • Your educational background. Singapore authorities give a lot of weight to your degree and the institute from which you graduated.
  • Your physical stay in Singapore. The shorter your physical stay in Singapore, the lesser the authorities will be convinced that you plan to reside in Singapore permanently.
  • Your employment background and the stability of your job
  • Credentials of your employer (the more established the company, the better)
  • Your salary and financial well-being
  • Your character (such as whether or not you are a law-abiding citizen)
  • Your family ties in Singapore. If you have family ties, it’s considered a positive factor.
  • Your charitable contributions to society such as volunteering, donations, etc.

Bottom line: the government wants to ensure that you are a law abiding resident and that you will not become a burden on Singapore if you are granted a permanent residence status. They want you to be an asset to the country and not a liability.

Step 3: Decide on PR filing for your children
If you are married and have children, one of the important decisions you have to make is whether you want to apply for PR for your male children.

As per Singapore laws, the main applicant (i.e. you) who is granted Singapore PR under the first generation PTS Scheme is exempted from National Service. However, all healthy male children that are granted PR status through their parents must register for National Military Service when they reach the age of 16 and a half. They will be required to serve two years of full-time National Service followed by 40 days of Operationally Ready National Service per year until the age of 50 (for officers) or 40 years (for other ranks).

Different parents look at the National Service requirement differently. Some of them don’t mind it, thinking that the child will be stronger and more mature after the two-year service. Others are horrified at the thought of having their child go through any kind of military service. You will need to think where you stand on this issue and decide the PR application filing for your male children accordingly.

Step 4: Download documents and review filing requirements
Once your eligibility is established and you have decided to proceed with PR application filing, the next step is to obtain the PR application forms and review submission requirements.

The good news is that you can download the necessary forms online by Documents Required.  Specifically, download the two forms titled Form 4A and Form EP4 listed under PTS Scheme.

Form 4A document consists of two parts: PR Application Form and Annex A. The first part (PR Application Form) is to be completed by you. It asks for you and your family’s details, covering basic information as well as educational and professional history. The second part (Annex A) is for your employer, who must explain the nature of their business, though your employer is not considered to be sponsoring your application. Later sections of this report will provide guidelines on completing the Form 4A.

The second document titled Form EP4 contains explanatory notes on Form 4A and this is the document you need to pay attention to first. Read this document and get ready to prepare the supporting documents as explained in the next section.

Step 5: Prepare supporting documents
The first order of business after you have downloaded and read the necessary documents is to get the supporting documents ready. The list of supporting documents required is provided in the Form EP4. Here are some additional helpful guidelines that you should take into account:

  • For each supporting document, make a copy and keep the original handy as well. At the time of submitting the PR application at ICA office, you will be required to show the original for verification. The originals will be returned to you immediately after sighting and the copies will be retained by the ICA officer.
  • If you have any document that’s not in English, you must produce an official English translation of the document. The safest approach is to get it translated and stamped through your embassy. Make sure to take originals and copies of both non-English and English translated versions of the document for your visit to ICA office.
  • Previous employment appointment letters, performance evaluation reports, recommendation letters are also useful. Contact your previous employer(s) if necessary.
  • If you have purchased a property in Singapore, include the documents provide the necessary proof. This will be considered a positive factor both in terms of your financial position as well as your longer-term intention of staying in Singapore.
  • Make sure you also attach a most recent copy of your CV/Resume.
  • -It’s also a good idea to prepare a cover letter articulating your love for Singapore, your financial and family stability, your decision to become Singapore PR, and the list of supporting documents you are attaching with the application.

Bottom line: Singapore is big on paperwork and the accuracy of it. The more you produce, the better. Once you have prepared copies and originals of all the required documents as per Form EP4 and you have taken into consideration the additional guidelines as listed above, you are ready for the next step i.e. filling-in the PR application form.

Step 6: Completing the PR application form
The PR application form is not a complicated application to complete and with the helpful guidelines listed below, it should be even easier:

  • List your education and employment history in a chronological order.
  • In the education listing section, list your high-school diploma and above. You do not need to list educational details below high school diploma.
  • If you cannot produce an appropriate certificate for a degree or diploma education that you have completed, don’t list it. Otherwise, it might create unnecessary delays where authorities might send you a letter saying that you need to produce the necessary document for verification purpose in order to further process your application.
  • The details of your spouse and children would also be listed in the same PR application form. Even if you are not applying for PR for any of your family members (spouse or children), you still need to provide their details in the application. For each of the family members, there if a field where you will indicate whether or not you are applying for the PR for this family member.
  • Ask your employer to complete the Annex A (i.e. the last page of the PR application form titled “Annex A to Form 4A (Application for Permanent Residence)”). Completion of this form is just to serve as confirmation that the information provided is accurate and valid and it DOES NOT imply Company’s Sponsorship.

Although the form states that it will take you approximately 30 minutes to complete, in realty, you will probably end up spending few hours in completing the PR application form.

Step 7: Submit PR application
Once you have a) completed the PR application form; b) received the completed Annex A back from your employer; and c) prepared the supporting documents, it’s time to submit your PR application to Immigration and Checkpoint Authority (ICA) of Singapore.

As mentioned previously, make sure you take originals with you for verification purposes. The application has to be submitted in person. You cannot just mail it to ICA office. The purpose of asking you to submit documents in person is to a) verify copies of supporting documents against the originals; b) ensure the PR application is complete and that you have submitted all the necessary documents.

Don’t worry; it’s not some tough interview where you will be asked hard questions, rather, it’s just a simple procedure of submitting your PR application along with the necessary documents to ICA. The officer will check your application for completeness and double-check that you are submitting the necessary supporting documents. The officer will also verify the copies against the originals.

Before you leave, check to make sure you have all the originals back in your possession.

Step 8: Wait for results
Once you have submitted your PR application, the most anxious time starts i.e. waiting for the application outcome. The more you think about it, the more restless you will get and it will make no difference to the outcome. So sit back and relax.

It will take approximately three to six months before you receive a letter from ICA notifying you about the outcome of your PR application. If however, you did not receive the letter and would like to know the status, you can call ICA and they will inform you of the current status of your PR application. Most of the time, you will end up hearing “it’s under processing”, unless it has been approved or rejected. You will not be provided with any other explanations or reasons. In reality the operator answering your phone probably does not know the details anyway; all he/she (usually it’s a she!) can see on the computer is just the status of the application.

Step 9: Upon Approval
Once you receive your approval letter (congratulations!), you need to make one more visit to ICA office within 30 days of receiving your approval letter, to complete the Singapore Permanent Residence formalities. Typically, you will need to bring the following documents (the specific list of documents to be submitted will be mentioned in your approval letter) with you:

  • The approval letter
  • Results of medical check-up. Authorities will require a medical-check report for you and your spouse. The list of tests to be done will be listed in the approval letter.
  • Passport-size photos for each of the applicants.
  • Your EP and DP passes. They will be taken from you and replaced with PR cards.
  • Travel documents for each of the applicants.

You will visit the same place (i.e. fifth floor) and follow the same queue procedure at the ICA office to complete your PR formalities. The officer will collect all your documents from you and finish the necessary formalities (signing, fingerprinting, etc.). At the end of this, you will be handed over the following items:

  • PR identity card for you and your spouse. This is the card that you will often be required to produce (e.g. when applying for mobile phone, bank account, etc.) in Singapore as a proof that you are a Singapore PR holder. Children don’t get a PR card until they turn 15.
  • Each PR applicant will get a PR certificate (mostly for safekeeping, you won’t really use it anywhere)
  • Each PR applicant will get a re-entry permit stamp in the passport. The re-entry permit enables you to get in and out of Singapore visa free. The re-entry permit is typically issued for five years at a time and is renewable thereafter. If you plan to leave Singapore, make sure that your re-entry permit is valid until your return.

Once you have completed the above PR formalities, you are a full-fledged Singapore permanent resident! With your new status, you can enjoy many of the benefits given to full citizens, including the freedom to live and work in Singapore without visa restrictions, priority government schooling for your children and compulsory participation in the Central Provident Fund (CPF) Scheme, which grows your pension fund. Don’t forget to:

  • Inform your employer of your new PR status. Your employer will require a copy of your PR card to update HR records and will also need to start making contributions to your CPF fund.
  • Inform banks so they can update your bank account personal details.

Step 10: Handling PR Rejection
Although receiving a PR rejection letter can be a very disheartening experience at first, remember that it’s not end of the world or the end of your pursuit to obtain permanent residence in Singapore. There are no restrictions on how many times you can apply for Singapore PR. However, practically, you should wait at least six months before re-submitting your PR application.

Professional Help
Should you engage a professional firm to assist you with your Singapore PR application filing? The answer is that it depends. If after reading this guide you feel that you know what you are doing, you probably don’t need professional help. If on the other hand, you feel that could use an experienced set of eyes to review your application and supporting documents and give you recommendations to maximize your chances of success, you can ask a professional services firm like us for help. Email us at 3e@3ecpa.com.sg should you need assistance.

Renewal of Singapore PR

On 24 April 2012, TODAY Paper has published an article on the uncertainty surrounding the rejection of Singapore Employment Pass and Singapore permanent resident (PR) renewal applications. The article cited that the lack of clarity as to why the renewals were rejected have puzzled many expats, compelling them to rethink of their decision to work in Singapore. Employment Passes or PR re-entry permits which were not renewed had expats either appealing to the authorities for a second chance or packing their bags ready to relocate. Those whose passes have been approved for the first or second times have a feeling of uncertainty lingering too as it may be the last time they are renewed.

However, although no written guideline is given by ICA, there are always few criteria is considered for renewal of your Singapore PR.
1)      Whether you are working in Singapore and received salary in Singapore
2)      How much the income tax you are paying every year
3)      How many days you are staying in Singapore

Documents required
If you are an employee, you may submit any of the following documents:

  • A letter (issued not more than one month ago) from the employer addressed to the Controller of Immigration, stating the date of employment, position held and monthly salary; or
  • Statement from the CPF Board showing the CPF Contribution History for the last 12 months; or
  • Income Tax Notice of Assessment for the last one year.

If you are self-employed (e.g. company director, sole proprietor, business partner), you may submit any of the following documents:

  • Income Tax Notice of Assessment for the last one year; or
  • Business Registration Certificate (showing the names of all the Directors and partners) from the Instant Information Service, Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA).

Steps for renewal of Singapore PR
1)      Visit Renewal of Re-entry Permit
2)      Submit your application online via Electronic Re-Entry Permit System (e-REP) with a SingPass account before the expiry date of your current REP.
3)      It will take about five working days for processing the renewal of the Singapore PR.
4)      Should your renewal application be rejected, you can always file the appeal by visiting the ICA office.

Thinking of Renouncing Your Singapore PR?

You can cancel your Singapore permanent residence (PR) if your re-entry permit is still valid and you have decided to renounce your PR status for whatever reason.
The following documents will be required for renounce your Singapore PR:
– Your passport
– Your PR card (ie NRIC)
– The certificate of permanent residence (that was given to you at the time of issuance of permanent residence status)
– A letter addressed to Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) of Singapore stating your desire to cancel the Singapore PR status

If you are in Singapore, you can visit ICA office and renounce your PR. If you are overseas, you can usually visit the nearest Singapore embassy/consulate or courier them the required documents for processing.

After your permanent residence status has been canceled, you may withdraw your CPF balance in full.

Frequently Asked Questions

As Singapore PR (SPR), you have the advantage to travel in and out of Singapore throughout the validity of their Re-Entry Permit (REP). Furthermore, SPRs are not required to apply for a new work visa each time they find employment. Singapore Permanent Residency can be applied for the applicant’s spouse, children (below 21 years old) and parents. Furthermore, SPRs are also eligible for certain concessions, schemes and benefits in Singapore.

SPRs and their employers are also required to contribute a portion of their salary to the Central Provident Fund (CPF). SPRs whose sons are 21 years of age and below are obliged to serve conscription, or National Service (NS).

As a male who is an SPR and below the age of 21, he will be required to serve conscription in Singapore at approximately at the age of 18, just like any other Singapore Citizen. The duration of the conscription or ‘National Service’ will be 2 years and there after serve additional 40 days per year till the age of 40 for NCOs or 50 for officers. Conscription is mandatory and not optional, so are the vocational postings. Your son may be drafted into any of the 3 postings: Army, Police or Civil Defense.

Yes, you can, if valid reason is provided for. However, if your reason does not seem legit, it will substantially minimize the approval chances of your application, or maybe even jeopardize it.

No. Only dependant’s children below 21 years of age can be sponsored under the parent’s PR application. For children above 21 years old, they will need to apply the SPR on their own.

As long as a Singapore Permanent Resident (SPR) has a valid Re-Entry Permit (REP), the individual is allowed to reside in Singapore and enter and exit freely. The REP is issued for 5 years after which it has to be renewed. SPRs who are overseas without a valid Re-Entry Permit will lose their SPR status.