A new hurdle for Indian IT Professionals?

In it’s attempt to pander to rising xenophobia, Singapore has apparently severely reduced the issuing of visas to Indian IT professionals. You might make fun of your IT department for being full of Indian expatriates but it won’t be any longer, with Singapore apparently having insisted on certain ‘Economics Needs Test (ENT)’ in order to deny visas to Indian IT professionals. In recent years, numerous Indian companies such as  Infosys and Tata Consultancy services have set up shop here due to the favorable business environment and opportunities created here.

In recent years, however, the government has faced increasing pressure from locals over these MNCs being tilted towards hiring expatriates rather than locals, causing them to insist on these companies hiring Singaporeans. It looks like all gloves seem to be off and the government taken the Donald Trump route, as described by Indian media, to ‘bring jobs back’ to the locals.

The Indian government’s response , according to a Times of India (TOI) report, has been to put on hold a review of The Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA), citing a significant violation by our city state. According to one Indian official, the agreement,  which Singapore had agreed to, clearly stated that there will be not ENT and quotas on required services by these MNCs. 

Such a heavy reduction in visas issued has turned the tables on Singapore and according to a Firstpost report, has caused some MNCs to pull out of here in recent months. The Indian media, as you can see, has had a field day with this news,  with some outlets calling it a ‘visa ban’.  One does wonder, how diplomatic this move really is as part of Singapore’s larger agenda to woo Indian corporations and only time tell what impact this move will have on Singapore’s competitiveness as a leading business hub in Asia. Is Singapore unfairly targeting Indian PMETs ?
  • http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/business/international-business/singapore-blocks-visas-for-indian-it-professionals/articleshow/57981840.cms
  • http://www.dnaindia.com/money/report-fresh-visa-trouble-for-indian-it-professionals-now-singapore-wants-to-hire-locals-2379475
  • http://www.india.com/business/after-us-visa-ban-singapore-visa-ban-hits-it-professionals-1987291/
  • http://www.firstpost.com/business/not-just-us-singapore-steps-up-to-reduce-visas-for-indian-it-professionals-3364820.html
Meanwhile, it might be prudent to wait for our ICA to respond on this matter.


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