Non-Traditional Sources (NTS) Occupation List

From 01 September 2023, firms in Services and Manufacturing sectors can hire Work Permit holders from NTS countries for a restricted set of occupations in the NTS Occupation List.

What is the NTS Occupation List

Firms in the Services and Manufacturing sectors are generally required to hire Work Permit holders from the following countries or regions:

  • Malaysia
  • People’s Republic of China (PRC)
  • North Asian sources (NAS):
    • Hong Kong (HKSAR passport)
    • Macau
    • South Korea
    • Taiwan

However, firms will be allowed to hire Work Permit holders from NTS countries for a restricted set of occupations in the NTS Occupation List which have few locals.


Firms must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Subject to a quota for NTS Work Permit holders in the NTS Occupation List. NTS Work Permit holders must be higher-skilled (i.e. meet the R1 criteria).
  • Work Permit holders must only perform the occupation stated on their work permit.

When will it be introduced

The NTS Occupation List will take effect from 1 September 2023, together with the first increase of S Pass qualifying salary for renewals.

NTS Occupation List

The NTS Occupation List comprises:

  • Cooks in Indian restaurants. This will better support Singapore’s multi-ethnic food culture.

Tip: Restaurants (Services sector) can already hire Work Permit holders from Malaysia, PRC and North Asian Sources.

  • Workers in food processing firms, e.g. vegetable pickler, condiments and sauce makers.
  • Food processing supervisors and general foremen.
  • Other food and beverage jobs like tasters, graders, bakers, pastry-cooks and confectionery makers.
  • Workers in manufacturing firms such as general manufacturers, precision engineering, transport engineering, automotive firms, working as:
    • Sheet metal workers
    • Welders and flame cutters
    • Metal moulders and coremakers
    • Riggers and cable splicers
    • Structural metal reparers and erectors

Take note that MOM will review the list from time to time and more details are expected from MOM closer to September 2023.

Source of Information for all Work Passes & their related matters is from the Ministry Of Manpower, Singapore.

Please refer to MOM website at www.mom.gov.sg for more detailed information and up-to-date guidelines with regulations.

Please CONTACT us if you wish to know more about this service or many other services.


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