Singapore, officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign city-state and island country in Southeast Asia. Stamford Raffles founded colonial Singapore in 1819 as a trading post of the British East India Company; after the latter’s collapse in 1858, the islands were ceded to the British Raj as a crown colony. During the Second World War, Singapore was occupied by Japan. It gained independence from the UK in 1963 by federating with other former British territories to form Malaysia, but separated two years later over ideological differences, becoming a sovereign nation in 1965. After early years of turbulence and despite lacking natural resources and a hinterland, the nation developed rapidly as an Asian Tiger economy, based on external trade and its workforce.
Singapore is a global commerce, finance and transport hub. Its standings include: the most “technology-ready” nation (WEF), top International-meetings city (UIA), city with “best investment potential” (BERI), third-most competitive country, third-largest foreign exchange market, third-largest financial centre, third-largest oil refining and trading centre and the second-busiest container port. The country has also been identified as a tax haven.
Singapore ranks 5th on the UN Human Development Index and the 3rd highest GDP per capita. It is ranked highly in education, healthcare, life expectancy, quality of life, personal safety and housing. Although income inequality is high, 90% of homes are owner-occupied. 38% of Singapore’s 5.6 million residents are permanent residents and other foreign nationals. There are four official languages: English (common and first language), Malay, Mandarin and Tamil; almost all Singaporeans are bilingual.
Singapore is a unitary multiparty parliamentary republic, with a Westminster system of unicameral parliamentary government. The People’s Action Party has won every election since self-government in 1959. The dominance of the PAP, coupled with a low level of press freedom and restrictions on civil liberties and political rights, has led to Singapore being classified by some as a flawed democracy. One of the five founding members of ASEAN, Singapore is also the host of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Secretariat and a member of the East Asia Summit, Non-Aligned Movement and the Commonwealth of Nations.
Singapore lies one degree (137 kilometres (85 mi)) north of the equator, at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, with Indonesia’s Riau Islands to the south and Peninsular Malaysia to the north. Singapore’s territory consists of one main island along with 62 other islets. Since independence, extensive land reclamation has increased its total size by 23% (130 square kilometres (50 sq mi)).
Singapore consists of 63 islands, including the main island, Pulau Ujong. There are two man-made connections to Johor, Malaysia: the Johor–Singapore Causeway in the north and the Tuas Second Link in the west. Jurong Island, Pulau Tekong, Pulau Ubin and Sentosa are the largest of Singapore’s smaller islands. The highest natural point is Bukit Timah Hill at 163.63 m (537 ft).
Ongoing land reclamation projects have increased Singapore’s land area from 581.5 km2 (224.5 sq mi) in the 1960s to 719.1 km2 (277.6 sq mi) in 2015, an increase of some 23% (130 km2). The country is projected to grow by another 100 km2 (40 sq mi) by 2030. Some projects involve merging smaller islands through land reclamation to form larger, more functional islands, as has been done with Jurong Island.
Singapore continues to be a strong centre of economic activity. One of the busiest ports in the world, the country, for a very long time, enjoyed stupendous growth rates. Starting from banking, the country attracted the best of the business houses from the world and quickly became the hub of all commercial activity. A steady rise of multinationals in the country increased the demand of professionals, creating a strong job market for students aspiring to work after completing their higher education from Singapore. While this continues to be the case, it is important to understand that as such, students cannot stay on in Singapore on their Student Pass to look for a job like in some European countries or USA. But does that mean that students have to come back to India after completing their education? The answer is…not necessarily. One to three months of stay back option is available to students. Students can apply for and get a non-renewable Long Term Visit Pass of one year to stay on in Singapore to look for relevant employment, provided, you have completed your education from a recognized and approved Institute of Higher Learning.
A long term Visit pass (LTVP) can be issued to Indian students who have received their educational certificate/ degree from the listed Institutes of Higher Learning. Students must understand that this is a non-renewable visit pass and in case you are not able to acquire the employment which makes them eligible for a Work Permit by the end of that year, they would have to return to India.
Work Permissions While Studying
According to the ministry of Manpower, Singapore, international students on a Student Pass in Singapore are eligible to work part time for about 16 hours a week during term and for unlimited hours during vacation, provided, they are a registered full time student in one of the approved institutions.
They hold a valid Student Pass issued by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA). It is important to note here that students studying in the university/ institution which is not on the list of approved institutions, are not eligible to work part time or full time both during term and/ or vacation.
Maximum of 16 hours a week Is under the industrial attachment program conducted by your university or educational institute and contribute towards graduation requirements.
What students must understand here is even if you are studying in an approved university, if the university does not have an industrial attachment program (neither compulsory, nor elective), then you are not eligible for a part time work.
Unlike other countries, Singapore does not allow you to take up any work. The Universities in Singapore have internships which are related to the course you are planning to study. A student can only opt for these related internships. Also, most of the universities have partnerships with industrial houses which would provide the students to work part time.