Government to raise minimum wages for foreign staff

SINGAPORE: Starting September 2022, the minimum salary requirement for professional foreign workers will be increased.

Employment Pass (EP) applicants will have to earn at least SGD 5,000 per month (up from the current SGD 4,500) in order to qualify for one of the coveted passes. A slightly higher threshold will be introduced for workers in the financial services sector.

Finance Minister Lawrence Wong says the wage thresholds will be seasonally adjusted to ensure that employers hire only high-quality EP holders, who will be expected to help transfer their specialist skills on to the local workforce.

"EP holders should be professionals and senior executives who can contribute to our economy, sharpen the skills of those they work with, and strengthen our workforce," he said.

The minister added that his office would also refine EP applications assessments to better the job-matching, improve foreign workforce diversity, and increase business certainty and transparency.

"By combining local and foreign professionals, we form the best teams in Singapore to create value together," he stated.

"This gives us that extra advantage to excel amidst intense global competition, and to create many more good jobs and career choices for Singaporeans," the minister added.

The salary thresholds for lower-tier S Pass holders will also increase from September 2022. The minimum required salary for new applicants will be up from the current SGD 2,500 to SGD 3,000 per month.

Wong says the government's aim is for mid-level skilled workers to have the same quality as the top one-third of local associate professionals and technicians.

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