Singapore to roll out relaxed visa programme to attract global tech talent

Photo: Justin Lim / Unsplash

Singapore is rolling out the red carpet for top talent, launching a program to initially attract 500 individuals with a proven track record of contributing to the global technology ecosystem.

Under the so-called Tech.Pass program, qualified individuals will be able to secure a new type of visa allowing them to start and operate more than one company and become an investor, consultant or mentor for local startups, according to the Economic Development Board.

This offers more flexibility than current government regulations, which require companies to sponsor an employment pass for talent they want to bring in.

The two-year visa isn’t designed for mid-tier tech workers who might compete with locals for jobs, a political issue that has prompted the government to tighten its framework for issuing employment passes to foreigners this year.

It’s targeted at highly accomplished entrepreneurs and technical experts who can bring in capital, networks and know-how, as Singapore aims to become the region’s technology and innovation hub.

“Tech.Pass will add to the critical mass of established tech talent in Singapore and create a ‘flywheel effect’ to further strengthen our position as a leading tech hub for the region,” Minister of Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing said in his opening remarks at the closed-door dialogue with the European Chamber of Commerce on Thursday.

Candidates must meet two of the three requirements before they can apply for the program starting in January.

They must have last drawn a monthly salary of at least S$20,000 ($14,800); have at least five years of experience in leading a tech company with a valuation or market value of at least $500 million; or have at least five years of experience in developing a tech product that has at least 100,000 monthly active users or at least $100 million of revenue.

Bloomberg

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.