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Oral Answer by Mr Tan Chuan-Jin, Minister for Manpower, to Parliamentary Question on CPF Withdrawals by PRs

Notice Paper 141. Of 2014 For The Sitting On 29 May 2014
Question Nos. 4 For Oral Answer

MP: Mrs Lina Chiam 

To ask the Minister for Manpower from 2003 to 2013, how many permanent residents have withdrawn their CPF monies when they leave Singapore permanently and what is the total amount of CPF monies withdrawn.


  1. The average amount withdrawn per year by CPF members leaving Singapore from 2003 to 2013 was $426 million, or 0.3% of average total members’ balances. This includes the amounts withdrawn by former Singapore Citizens, former Permanent Residents and foreigners who contributed to the CPF before 2003.

  2. CPF Board does not track the amount separately for PRs who have given up their residency.

Mrs Lina Chiam: Madam, I thank the Minister for the response. I have three supplementary questions. Among the Permanent Residents who left Singapore permanently by way of withdrawing their CPF, what is the average length of their PR status in Singapore? Secondly, can PRs keep their properties after withdrawing their CPF monies when they leave Singapore for good? Can they be employed again in Singapore?

Mr Tan Chuan-Jin: Mdm Speaker, with regard to the first question, my ministry does not track PRs specifically, so I do not have the details of the length of stay by PRs here. With regard to their properties, perhaps the Member would like to file a specific Parliamentary Question. I would imagine that if they owned properties here and they leave Singapore, if they are able to own the property, they could continue to own it in their names.* With regard to the last question which is whether PRs are able to come back here to work, we will evaluate anyone who is applying to come back to work in Singapore. Obviously, their track records and their past histories will have a bearing on whether they are able to be employed here or not.

*PRs who own any private apartment or condominium are not required to sell these properties, as foreigners are currently allowed to own private non-landed residential properties. However, after they have ceased to be PRs, they are required to dispose of any landed residential property on mainland Singapore, or any HDB flat, if they own such properties.

For the reply to related Parliamentary Question, please see:
Ministry of National Development's written answer to MP Mrs Lina Chiam's question on withdrawal of CPF monies by permanent residents