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PR rejected, need some perspective

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EJ3482
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PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby EJ3482 » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 5:32 pm

Hi all, here are my/our stats:

1- Me: European (smaller country but one of the largest foreign direct investors into Singapore, excellent relations), 30 years old. My wife: PRC Chinese and same age. Daughter: 3 years old, born and bred in Singapore going to a local kindergarten. Married for 6 years, looking for a place to really shoot roots that is not Europe or China, hoping it could be Singapore.
2- Both wife and I have postgraduate degrees in economics from reputable European universities. I speak fluent Mandarin, English and two other European languages and have official certificates from both Taiwan and China to testify my Chinese level. My daughter is trilingual. Considering to have more kids.
3- In Singapore since Mid 2012 on an EP. Applied for the first time April 2016 (after waiting 4 years and giving birth here) as a family, rejected July 2016 with "kiss of death" letter
4- My wife does not work. I work in finance. Monthly base is $15K, last year's bonus was 2x annual salary bringing total comp to $500K but I don't think I reported the bonus on the application form. IRAS would know however. Key thing to note is that I switched jobs after being here for 2 years: my other firm was trying to move me out of the country (to HK) and I wanted to stay. Literally had no choice. Still my new job was a big improvement on its own merits regardless of that.
5- Maybe relevant maybe not: my skill set is extremely suitable for an area in the financial sector the SG government is aggressively trying to court (Fintech), and as a side project I am working on a small startup in that space besides my day job
6- The two times I applied for an EP before, processing time was about 2-3 days max.
7- Stay in the heartlands.

I am a bit devastated by the rejection as I thought we made a good shot and we were making long term plans to let my daughter grow up in this country as a Singaporean. I had figured now wouldn't be the best time to apply and was prepared for an initial rejection ("try again next year please"), but I'm surprised they sent us the "kiss of death" letter. For what it's worth, probably not much, but Singaporean friends who know us well often remark that we are exactly the kind of couple the government should want to bring in: well integrated, well educated, trying to find a place to shoot roots, all speaking one of the other official languages besides English (i.e. Chinese).

I understand me being Caucasian and working in finance will be seen as a negative, as does switching jobs after 2 years. Yet I can't quite fathom why we were rejected while I know of Caucasian couples around me who did get their PR, when it is quite obvious that they will only want to spend a few years here before heading back and most have less qualifications and/or income than myself.

Is there anything obvious else in the above that would make the government dislike us? Was it bad timing? Does it make sense to ever try again? For instance if I just ask 3 or 4 random Singaporean friends to write a recommendation letter and add it in, would that add any value at all?

I tend to be impulsive with these things and my first thoughts on seeing the rejection were "call my boss, ask for a transfer to the head office in US", as I know he would be keen for me to move there and I would likely land there instantly on a green card eligible visa, taking my job and head count with me out of Singapore.. Is it game over for us in Singapore?

If in 2016 they don't want well educated, well earning, well willing individuals who try hard to integrate and want to settle down here, then what on earth kind of people are they really looking for?

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby Barnsley » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:01 pm

EJ3482 wrote:Hi all, here are my/our stats:

1- Me: European (smaller country but one of the largest foreign direct investors into Singapore, excellent relations), 30 years old. My wife: PRC Chinese and same age. Daughter: 3 years old, born and bred in Singapore going to a local kindergarten. Married for 6 years, looking for a place to really shoot roots that is not Europe or China, hoping it could be Singapore.
2- Both wife and I have postgraduate degrees in economics from reputable European universities. I speak fluent Mandarin, English and two other European languages and have official certificates from both Taiwan and China to testify my Chinese level. My daughter is trilingual. Considering to have more kids.
3- In Singapore since Mid 2012 on an EP. Applied for the first time April 2016 (after waiting 4 years and giving birth here) as a family, rejected July 2016 with "kiss of death" letter
4- My wife does not work. I work in finance. Monthly base is $15K, last year's bonus was 2x annual salary bringing total comp to $500K but I don't think I reported the bonus on the application form. IRAS would know however. Key thing to note is that I switched jobs after being here for 2 years: my other firm was trying to move me out of the country (to HK) and I wanted to stay. Literally had no choice. Still my new job was a big improvement on its own merits regardless of that.
5- Maybe relevant maybe not: my skill set is extremely suitable for an area in the financial sector the SG government is aggressively trying to court (Fintech), and as a side project I am working on a small startup in that space besides my day job
6- The two times I applied for an EP before, processing time was about 2-3 days max.
7- Stay in the heartlands.

I am a bit devastated by the rejection as I thought we made a good shot and we were making long term plans to let my daughter grow up in this country as a Singaporean. I had figured now wouldn't be the best time to apply and was prepared for an initial rejection ("try again next year please"), but I'm surprised they sent us the "kiss of death" letter. For what it's worth, probably not much, but Singaporean friends who know us well often remark that we are exactly the kind of couple the government should want to bring in: well integrated, well educated, trying to find a place to shoot roots, all speaking one of the other official languages besides English (i.e. Chinese).

I understand me being Caucasian and working in finance will be seen as a negative, as does switching jobs after 2 years. Yet I can't quite fathom why we were rejected while I know of Caucasian couples around me who did get their PR, when it is quite obvious that they will only want to spend a few years here before heading back and most have less qualifications and/or income than myself.

Is there anything obvious else in the above that would make the government dislike us? Was it bad timing? Does it make sense to ever try again? For instance if I just ask 3 or 4 random Singaporean friends to write a recommendation letter and add it in, would that add any value at all?

I tend to be impulsive with these things and my first thoughts on seeing the rejection were "call my boss, ask for a transfer to the head office in US", as I know he would be keen for me to move there and I would likely land there instantly on a green card eligible visa, taking my job and head count with me out of Singapore.. Is it game over for us in Singapore?

If in 2016 they don't want well educated, well earning, well willing individuals who try hard to integrate and want to settle down here, then what on earth kind of people are they really looking for?


Maybe your doing exactly the kind of job the Govt wants the citizens to have?

The letter isn't a kiss of death , more likely a test of your commitment and staying power.

If you throw your toys out of the pram and up sticks , then you have proved that the Govt were entirely correct to reject you at this point.

However if you stay for a couple more years and apply again , you will have shown some level of commitment to the place despite the perceived adversity.
Life is short, paddle harder!!

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby singaporeflyer » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:09 pm

EJ3482 wrote:I tend to be impulsive with these things and my first thoughts on seeing the rejection were "call my boss, ask for a transfer to the head office in US", as I know he would be keen for me to move there and I would likely land there instantly on a green card eligible visa, taking my job and head count with me out of Singapore.. Is it game over for us in Singapore?


They want people who are patient and committed. With a single rejection, you wanted to say that you want to move to US, what is the guarantee that you will stay here when the economic times are bad in asia?

Read through the forum, there are many who stayed here despite rejections and finally got their PR. Some years ago it was like higher the salary, easy to get PR. Not anymore. Time has changed and now Salary is just one factor among many factors that are looking at.

Better to wait for 2-3 years and retry again, which will show you are really committed. Good Luck !

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby EJ3482 » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:17 pm

Barnsley wrote:
Maybe your doing exactly the kind of job the Govt wants the citizens to have?

The letter isn't a kiss of death , more likely a test of your commitment and staying power.

If you throw your toys out of the pram and up sticks , then you have proved that the Govt were entirely correct to reject you at this point.

However if you stay for a couple more years and apply again , you will have shown some level of commitment to the place despite the perceived adversity.


Thanks for the reply, much appreciated. And totally fair point, while I was writing it that's also exactly what was going through my mind.

What do you mean though when you say the letter isn't a kiss of death? My understanding is that a certain phrasing basically translates to "just don't bother to try again", no?

If instead they had told me, just wait it out 1, 2, 5 or whatever years and you'll probably be good I would patiently do so, but to me it rather feels like they've just crossed out my future in Singapore.

The thing about my job is that if I leave Singapore I will definitely not be replaced here and take the job with me. It's a very specific niche, I'd be surprised if there are more than a hundred people on employment pass here with the same title or skills.

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby EJ3482 » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:20 pm

singaporeflyer wrote:
EJ3482 wrote:I tend to be impulsive with these things and my first thoughts on seeing the rejection were "call my boss, ask for a transfer to the head office in US", as I know he would be keen for me to move there and I would likely land there instantly on a green card eligible visa, taking my job and head count with me out of Singapore.. Is it game over for us in Singapore?


They want people who are patient and committed. With a single rejection, you wanted to say that you want to move to US, what is the guarantee that you will stay here when the economic times are bad in asia?

Read through the forum, there are many who stayed here despite rejections and finally got their PR. Some years ago it was like higher the salary, easy to get PR. Not anymore. Time has changed and now Salary is just one factor among many factors that are looking at.

Better to wait for 2-3 years and retry again, which will show you are really committed. Good Luck !


Thanks much for the reply.

Fully understand your remarks. In my defense, these are the unfiltered emotions of someone who really wanted to make Singapore home and feels like his future has just been permanently crossed out by the government. Kiss of death means don't bother again, right? I assume plenty of people who get PR could get a PR elsewhere like me, but surely that can't be the reason not to grant it to them?

I'd be more than happy to bide my time if I knew there was light at the end of the tunnel.

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby Barnsley » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:28 pm

EJ3482 wrote:
singaporeflyer wrote:
EJ3482 wrote:I tend to be impulsive with these things and my first thoughts on seeing the rejection were "call my boss, ask for a transfer to the head office in US", as I know he would be keen for me to move there and I would likely land there instantly on a green card eligible visa, taking my job and head count with me out of Singapore.. Is it game over for us in Singapore?


They want people who are patient and committed. With a single rejection, you wanted to say that you want to move to US, what is the guarantee that you will stay here when the economic times are bad in asia?

Read through the forum, there are many who stayed here despite rejections and finally got their PR. Some years ago it was like higher the salary, easy to get PR. Not anymore. Time has changed and now Salary is just one factor among many factors that are looking at.

Better to wait for 2-3 years and retry again, which will show you are really committed. Good Luck !


Thanks much for the reply.

Fully understand your remarks. In my defense, these are the unfiltered emotions of someone who really wanted to make Singapore home and feels like his future has just been permanently crossed out by the government. Kiss of death means don't bother again, right? I assume plenty of people who get PR could get a PR elsewhere like me, but surely that can't be the reason not to grant it to them?

I'd be more than happy to bide my time if I knew there was light at the end of the tunnel.


I had a colleague applied 5 or 6 times .... Eventually he get PR.

Just wait a couple more years , you will have a couple more years of integration under your belt.

Show the Govt that you want to stay.
Life is short, paddle harder!!

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby singaporeflyer » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:37 pm

EJ3482 wrote:
singaporeflyer wrote:
EJ3482 wrote:Fully understand your remarks. In my defense, these are the unfiltered emotions of someone who really wanted to make Singapore home and feels like his future has just been permanently crossed out by the government. Kiss of death means don't bother again, right? I assume plenty of people who get PR could get a PR elsewhere like me, but surely that can't be the reason not to grant it to them?

I'd be more than happy to bide my time if I knew there was light at the end of the tunnel.


Did they tell you that it has been permanently crossed out. I don't think so. I personally know some of them who have got their PR, after receiving such letters. But I don't want to give too much hopes on this as they had significant change in their application along with the duration of stay that might have got their PR approved.

Also, no one from ICA has told that it is the kiss of death letter. To be honest, there is nothing guaranteed that PR would be given, as time to time the criteria changes.

But based on what you said, as long as you stay longer in Singapore and contribute, you will surely have a decent chance in a few years time.

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby singaporeflyer » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:40 pm

EJ3482 wrote:
Barnsley wrote:If instead they had told me, just wait it out 1, 2, 5 or whatever years and you'll probably be good I would patiently do so, but to me it rather feels like they've just crossed out my future in Singapore.


They were telling this earlier around 2008-2009. Not anymore.

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby EJ3482 » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 6:45 pm

singaporeflyer wrote:
EJ3482 wrote:
singaporeflyer wrote:


Did they tell you that it has been permanently crossed out. I don't think so. I personally know some of them who have got their PR, after receiving such letters. But I don't want to give too much hopes on this as they had significant change in their application along with the duration of stay that might have got their PR approved.

Also, no one from ICA has told that it is the kiss of death letter. To be honest, there is nothing guaranteed that PR would be given, as time to time the criteria changes.

But based on what you said, as long as you stay longer in Singapore and contribute, you will surely have a decent chance in a few years time.


Thank you.

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby PNGMK » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 9:41 pm

Look for such a well educated man you have utterly failed to understand that this is purely a numbers game (statistics) with open data available from the government. Although the ICA is a 'black box' we know roughly what goes into the box in terms of input and we absolutely definitively know what comes out in terms of approvals and to a lesser extent (and by inference) rejections.

You, the primary candidate are a Caucasian. Your children will be half breeds in the system. Your beloved wife may be Chinese but as a group you are not a Chinese family. Singapore approved 25000 PR's applications a year and is open (the doc is on this forum) that the primary and absolutely no 1 priority is maintaining the current ratio of races and that PR IS THE GATEWAY for citizenship.

Because the Chinese don't like sex (your wife hopefully excepted no offense intended) and the Malay's and Indians love unprotected sex the Chinese race quota is continually falling (in natural terms) against the other two (and against the untouchable "others"). So it we take the current ratio of "others" (i.e. Caucasians, Half Breeds, Melanesians whatever) it's around 3% to be generous of the current population BUT "others" doesn't need immigration to support that categories TFR and we know that ICA is trying to counter the fall of the Chinese population ... so what % of 25,000 approved PR's applicants are going to be a Caucasian with non-Chinese children and (admittedly) a Chinese wife in an occupation that may not be exactly what Singapore believes to be a permanent occupation for an immigrant? Maybe 0? Maybe a handful of absolutely desirables? Maybe 1% (250) applicants who have been hammering away at the system? Probably not 3%. How many of the 'others' category are applying? That we don't know but with the influx of Eastern European and Ex-Soviet State citizens probably > 1000 p.a.?

The upside is that because it's just a numbers game you don't become emotional but approach it as a numbers game. I know Caucasians who have tried SIX times for PR before being approved.
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Re: RE: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby ecureilx » Thu, 22 Sep 2016 11:41 pm

EJ3482 wrote:I am a bit devastated by the rejection as I thought we made a good shot and we were making long term plans to let my daughter grow up in this country as a Singaporean.
..
If in 2016 they don't want well educated, well earning, well willing individuals who try hard to integrate and want to settle down here, then what on earth kind of people are they really looking for?


Getting devastated ...

Gov't don't want great people like you ...

Bit speechless at your words.

I wonder if you feel the same sympathy at those Asians who get simple visit visa to US or West rejected - heart breaking, including those who are dying to meet their dying old folks ... no offense.

Life is unfair.

But with your salary, and the passport you hold, I don't see why you are devastated. I am sure you can buy a residency in Malaysia and let your kids study in Singapore, something not many can even dream of - other than the fact you or your family haven't been kicked out of Singapore - so it's not that devastating!

You live a much better life than most locals too !

PS, getting PR is far from making your daughter a Singaporean. Now if you invent something incredible - you should get fast tracked to citizenship ;)

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Re: RE: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby EJ3482 » Sat, 24 Sep 2016 7:26 am

ecureilx wrote:
EJ3482 wrote:I am a bit devastated by the rejection as I thought we made a good shot and we were making long term plans to let my daughter grow up in this country as a Singaporean.
..
If in 2016 they don't want well educated, well earning, well willing individuals who try hard to integrate and want to settle down here, then what on earth kind of people are they really looking for?


Getting devastated ...

Gov't don't want great people like you ...

Bit speechless at your words.

I wonder if you feel the same sympathy at those Asians who get simple visit visa to US or West rejected - heart breaking, including those who are dying to meet their dying old folks ... no offense.

Life is unfair.

But with your salary, and the passport you hold, I don't see why you are devastated. I am sure you can buy a residency in Malaysia and let your kids study in Singapore, something not many can even dream of - other than the fact you or your family haven't been kicked out of Singapore - so it's not that devastating!

You live a much better life than most locals too !

PS, getting PR is far from making your daughter a Singaporean. Now if you invent something incredible - you should get fast tracked to citizenship ;)


Unhelpful.

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby GSM8 » Sat, 24 Sep 2016 9:08 am

Its disappointing but don't get disheartened. PR is a privilege to be thankful for rather than a rejection to be indignant about. And Singapore is still more meritocratic than many other countries - including the US where one may get a "green card eligible" visa similar to EP after weeks (not days) of processing, but that is essentially non-renewable after 6 years and if one doesn't qualify for green card in that time they need to leave, at least temporarily. On the other hand family based applications, both strong and weak, are approved in a time-bound manner and illegals continue to pour in with lame politicians scared to address it.

My thought would be to try again a year and you could well be granted PR then (like others on this thread say and as posted by many others on this forum as their experience). Good luck!

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby x9200 » Sat, 24 Sep 2016 9:36 am

Have to agree with what was already said and just to add, your well earning possibly only contributes to the rejection so is the the uniqueness of your job. You are basically a highly mobile individual. Something is wrong, and there is nothing that could stop you from leaving Singapore. At the same time you are unlikely THAT unique (that desired) for the SG gov to see you as an asset they must acquire.
All this probably translates to: you may need to show even more commitment than a less educated, less earning individual, leaving alone all the race related issues.

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Re: PR rejected, need some perspective

Postby bro75 » Sat, 24 Sep 2016 9:42 am

For a non-citizen or non-PR, it is difficult to make long term plans in Singapore because the PR approval process is opaque. But that said, Singapore is a good place to settle if your family gets a PR. Your next step depends on whether you want a more guaranteed place to settle now or you really like Singapore as a permanent home. If it is the former, other Western nations whose PR process is more transparent (points based or based on length of residency) may be a better option. If it is the latter, you can try to apply again here after a few years.


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