The new Singapore EntrePass framework, which has been refined to create better workplaces for Singaporeans, has come into effect this week.
Earlier in March this year, Singapore work visa specialist Rikvin has outlined the details of the impending changes in an announcement titled Foreign Entrepreneurs to Meet Tougher Criteria to Relocate: Rikvin.
In gist, the new framework features tougher entry and renewal criteria for entrepreneurs who wish to relocate to Singapore to run their businesses. Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM) asserted that this is to ensure that Singapore will attract a certain calibre of high potential and high growth startups.
Analysis by Rikvin shows that the framework has also been updated to keep in line with Singapore’s new direction of raising the quality of Singapore’s foreign workforce in a bid to create quality growth for Singaporeans.
The new framework is no doubt more challenging for entrepreneurs who are keen to relocate to Singapore.
However, it also ensures that those who manage to qualify for the scheme […] may be able to sink deeper roots in the citystate; therefore creating longer term employment opportunities for Singaporeans.”
When the the EntrePass scheme was introduced in 2003, it served to encourage entrepreneurship in Singapore. It functioned as an avenue for business persons with innovative ideas or those who were not eligible under the Singapore Employment Pass scheme to relocate to Singapore and run their business in the city-state. In 2009, it was yet again finetuned.
In essence, at least one of the following new EntrePass criteria must be met by prospective applicants, on top of the existing set of criteria:
- Receives support from a Singapore Government agency;
- Holds a nationally-recognised proprietary or licensed Intellectual Property (IP);
- Has research collaboration with recognised research institutions such as A*STAR or a local tertiary institution;
- Is an incubatee at a government-approved incubator; or
- Funded by an approved third-party venture capitalist or business angel.
Commenting further, Mr. Satish Bakhda, Head of Operations at Rikvin said, “The new framework is no doubt more challenging for entrepreneurs who are keen to relocate to Singapore. However, it also ensures that those who manage to qualify for the scheme have a good chance of doing well in Singapore and may be able to sink deeper roots in the citystate; therefore creating longer term employment opportunities for Singaporeans. This again could help the country create good jobs for an increasingly educated workforce.”