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Singapore - Expats
Singaporeans speak English and it’s not necessary to speak a second language here, although those who speak Mandarin or Malay will find that they are able to communicate well with others.
Nearly 25% of the population in Singapore are foreigners. In the past five years, the number of expats living and working in Singapore has risen 18%. In 2011, it was estimated that there were around 49,000 foreigners registered to work. Expats are spread out all over the city, but popular neighborhoods include Holland Village, the East Coast, and Bukit Timah. Expats are treated well and are welcome in Singapore. In fact, they’re almost expected to be there! As a permanent resident, you can enjoy many of the same rights that Singaporeans can and can buy property, let property, and also work (with the proper permits).
Healthcare is modern and the physicians are well-qualified. Although it is strongly suggested that expats purchase health insurance while in Singapore, most find that the costs for services are much cheaper than they are in other parts of the world. In fact, medical tourism to Singapore has become popular in recent years.
Singapore also offers good connections to the rest of the world since it is in a central location. It is quite easy to travel on to the rest of Asia, Africa, and Australia. Trains connect Singapore by land to Malaysia and Thailand and ferry services connect it to Indonesia.
Many expats enjoy relocating to Singapore because, while the cost of living is high, a lot of employers offer attractive benefit packages that include the cost of housing, transportation, health insurance, and even trips back to their home countries.
As a permanent resident, you have the option to use your CPF (Singapore’s social security scheme) to pay for healthcare costs, retirement, and housing. Many people use their CPF in order to make a down payment on a new property. If you are not a permanent resident, then some employers will still set aside a portion of your would-be CPF and this will be available to you upon your departure from the country. This can be another added benefit of working in Singapore, since you’ll have a savings account and funds available when you get ready to leave.
Each year, the number of expats relocating to Singapore grows. As Singapore continues to increase its importance in the financial and banking world, it is expected that more jobs in the financial sector will open up and more expats will continue to make their home there. With good weather, beautiful scenery, and a high standard of living, it is often considered to be an ideal expat destination.
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