Singapore population declines for the first time in 10 years because of far fewer foreigners. Retrenchments have hit foreign workers hard, causing many to leave.
Singapore’s population declined to 5.69 million as of June 2020, with a drop in the number of foreigners, data released by the National Population and Talent Division. As the Covid-19 pandemic closed off borders and shuttered businesses, Singapore saw its population dip in 10 years as many foreign workers left after losing their jobs.
Numbers of new Singapore Citizens & PRs remain stable
The number of permanent residents is still steady at 0.52 million. This shows that the Government is determined to keep the local population growing steadily. Due to the nation’s increasing life expectancy and low fertility rates, the population is ageing fast, with 16.8 % aged 65 vs 16 % last year.
The number of individuals granted new Singapore citizenship and PR status has kept stable over the past 4 years.
Since the tightening of Singapore’s immigration framework in late 2009, the number of new PRs is consistent with an average of 30,000 applications approved yearly. The Government will keep the rate of immigration “very stable” so Singapore continues to be a “cohesive society”, which can be inferred the graph, chart 16, above. These are the latest figures provided by Singapore’s Population In Brief 2020, which is updated every September of the year.
In 2019, 22,714 were granted citizenship and 32,915 were granted permanent residency – numbers have been largely stable for the last 10 years, growing at a controlled and steady pace, which is seen from the gentle upward slope of the blue graph, depicting the growth in new PRs approved.
Why is this important to you and why should you apply for Permanent Residence (PR) now?
The number of foreign residents in Singapore fell by 2.1% to 1.64 million as of June 2020. The number of employment pass holders has decreased from 193,700 in December 2019 to 189,700 in June 2020, and S pass holders decreased from 200,000 to 188,800.
“If employers must retrench, retain local over foreigner talent”, said Minister of State for Manpower and Education Gan Siow Huang.
The numbers of EP and S Pass holders have come down since Covid-19, as more foreigners have left Singapore because of retrenchment. New EP applications have been rescinded or taken longer than usual for approval. Work pass renewals will tighten from May 2021, with new qualifying salary, depending on your seniority level.
The immigration quota for Singapore, for 2020 and 2021, has already been set as the Singapore Government always plans forward. In order to supplement our nation’s ever falling birth rate, Singapore would still need to keep admitting new Singapore PRs.
A good handful of potential candidates for Singapore PR have decreased due to retrenchment. With less people applying, you stand a much higher chance of getting your Singapore PR as there is less competition!
With a Singapore PR, your place in Singapore is secure and permanent. Your Work Pass in Singapore will no longer be tied to your job. You will be regarded by employers as a “local hire”. No longer will you worry about the significant disruption to your family if the unthinkable happens and you are let go as a foreign expat, then sent home with your family.
If you are stable in your career and if you are in key growth sector in Singapore, now is the ideal time to apply!
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You should also check out “Singapore’s Economy Updates and Implications to my PR Application”