Immigration updates for Asia

Changes to work permits in Vietnam and Singapore and registration in Chennai 

Vietnam provides update on transition to online work permits

Online submission and management process to be implemented October 2, 2017 

Vietnam’s Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA) has issued a new circular (23/2017/TT-BLDTBXH) with an implementation date of October 2, 2017, providing details for the online submission and management of work permit applications within the new online process. 

While the new system remains optional in most Labour Department Offices, those located in Hanoi have completed a full transition to the new system. The submission of online applications has been mandatory in Hanoi since July 1, 2017. Processing times are reduced for online submissions but at present not significantly. 

The new circular provides detailed process instructions including suggested timelines and processing times for the following applications: job position approval, initial application and renewal of work permits and work permit exemptions. 

Source: This information was provided by Vietnam’s Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.

Singapore Ministry of Manpower introduces new work pass and mobile app 

Singapore Ministry of Manpower introduces new work pass and mobile app

Users will be able to access key information on their smartphones 

Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM) is introducing a new Work Pass (WP) card that will be embedded with a Quick Response (QR) code that works with a free SGWork Pass mobile app. The app can now be downloaded to smartphones via Apple’s App Store or Google Play.

Users of the SGWorkPass app will be able to instantly retrieve and verify key pass information such as pass type, date of application, pass expiry, occupation and pass validity status. This is done by scanning the card’s QR code with the SGWorkPass mobile app.

With this change, MOM will cease printing information such as date of application, date of pass issue/expiry and occupation on the new WP card.

The new WP card will be introduced in phases, starting with work permit holders in the Marine Shipyard and Construction sector from September 15, 2017 (Phase 1). Work Permit holders from other sectors (excluding the Domestic sector) and Employment Pass and S Pass holders will be issued cards in January 2018 (Phase 2) and March 2018 (Phase 3) respectively. 

Existing WP cards will remain valid and pass holders will receive their new cards when they renew their work passes based on the phased implementation for the different pass types. Family members presently on Dependent Passes and Long Term Visit Passes will also be issued with the new card in the latest format upon renewal of their passes.

The usual MOM pass application and issuance fees still apply and there will be no changes to existing work pass application and issuance processes.

For employers/stakeholders without smartphones, existing e-services on MOM's website such as the Work Pass Online (WPOL)/ Employment Pass Online (EPOL) can be used to obtain the latest information on pass status.


24-hour registration for foreign nationals in Chennai, India

Authorities require arrival and departure registration within 24-hour period

The Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) in Chennai now requires Landlords, apartment managers, hotels and other accommodation providers to complete the online Form C notification procedure within 24 hours of a foreign national’s arrival in Chennai. 

This follows our previous update regarding the 14-day period for registration allowed at other FRROs within India. Chennai remains the first, and to date the only, FRRO to require notification of a foreign national’s departure via the same online portal. 

Form C Requirement

All hotels, guest houses, private accommodations, universities, hospitals or institutes that provide accommodation to foreign nationals must register their details with the FRRO using the online Form C Portal. It is the responsibility of the individual’s employer to ensure that the registration has been completed. 

Every foreign national visiting India on a student, research, medical or employment visa valid for more than 180 days must be registered with the FRRO with jurisdiction over the place of stay within 14 days of arrival, irrespective of the duration of the stay. Foreign nationals visiting India on other categories of long-term visa, valid for more than 180 days, including business, entry and journalist visas, do not need to register if the duration of stay does not exceed 180 days on a single visit. If a visit is planned in excess of 180 days, registration is required well before the expiry of the initial 180 day period. 

Children under the age of 16 are exempt from registration. 

Source: This news alert was prepared using information from Peregrine Immigration Management, which is licensed to Crown World Mobility.
Disclaimer: The above information is provided for general information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. If you have any further inquiries regarding the applicability of this information, please contact Debra Beynon, Regional Immigration Manager, APAC.