Wednesday 15 October 2014

Easier for companies to open bank accounts for foreign workers

By Amelia Tan, The Straits Times, 13 Oct 2014

Employers will soon find it easier to open bank accounts for work permit holders from Oct 16.

They can apply for a POSB salary crediting account when they submit applications for new workers on the Work Permit Online portal. Applying for work permits and bank accounts used to be separate processes.

The change will help to reduce paperwork and waiting time taken to set up a bank account, said MOM said in a statement on Sunday.

Employers can take their workers to the MOM Services Centre at Bendemeer Road to register for a bank card and go to the POSB Account Services Centre for work permit holders at Hong Lim Complex the next day to activate the bank account. Previously, employers had to first submit an application and then wait to be given an appointment slot to activate the bank account.

DBS Bank opened the POSB Account Services Centre for Work Permit Holders at Hong Lim Complex in 2011. It serves 7,000 customers every month. There is no minimum deposit to open a bank account.

All account holders will also be provided with ATM cards. DBS has also installed ATMs at recreation centres for foreign workers and dormitories to that workers have easy access to their accounts.

These services are aimed at helping companies increase productivity, said Ms Lui Su Kian, managing director and head of deposits and secured lending at DBS Bank.

"In addition to providing them (companies) with institutional banking services such as salary crediting, we are also constantly exploring ways to help them save time," said Ms Lui.

Madam Ong Bee Lee, director in the work pass division at the MOM, said: "We are happy to launch this new one-stop process to make the WP and bank account opening process more seamless and efficient."

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