If you are in the labour market in Singapore, you know that foreigners need a work pass to work in Singapore.
However, there have been complaints about foreigners “taking up” jobs meant for locals.
So, there are some restrictions in place for companies to hire foreigners instead of Singaporeans.
However, some companies try to falsify information to make it easier to get the work passes across the line.
Since 2018, there have been at least 80 companies caught falsifying salaries to get the work passes they want.
Here is more about the situation.
More Than 80 Companies Falsified Information to Get Work Passes
Earlier this week, Zaobao reported that at least 80 companies were found to have fabricated salaries to get work passes, since 2018.
The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said that the most common way of falsifying information was by stating a higher salary in the application so that foreigners could enter the Singapore workforce using a different class of work pass.
Zaobao reported that out of these companies, at least one was a company supplying manpower. And over 57 companies employed fewer than 25 employees.
According to MOM, who spoke to Zaobao, the ministry is working diligently to ensure such fraud does not continue to perpetuate.
Salaries and work experience or educational background cannot be falsified in the work pass applications, so the ministry will continue to ensure that the applications are above board.
We sure hope so, if not, it would be so unfair to the Singaporeans who try hard to vie for limited positions in the local job market.
As for the 80 companies uncovered, they are currently being disciplined after their misdeeds came to light.
Ministry of Manpower Uses Statistics to Identify the Suspicious Applications
If you wonder how the MOM manages to catch these sneaky companies trying to defraud the government, the answer lies in the use of data.
The MOM shared with Zaobao that they use data and statistics to analyse some trends in order to identify which applications look suspicious.
For example, applications which report salaries which look out of the normal range may require additional supporting information before the work pass gets granted.
Also, the MOM conducts further checks into whether the salaries drawn by the employee actually match what was reported in the work pass application.
Documents are again crucial in helping to uncover these frauds.
That makes sense, given that it will be difficult for the company to continually keep up the pretence of higher salaries if they do not actually exist.