Economics and Education in Singapore

According to, Singapore is a small island state in the middle of Southeast Asia, at the southern tip of the Malaysian Peninsula. The country stretches over small 710 km2, but has over 5 million inhabitants and four official languages. The island state is today one of the world’s most competitive economies and is increasingly attracting highly skilled labor and students from all over the world.

Economics and education


Every year, the Singaporean government awards scholarships to students from selected partner countries (including Denmark) under the DUO-Singapore Exchange Fellowship. The scholarship is awarded to specially qualified students and the competition is great.

You can read more about the DUO scholarship here

Tuition fees

As an exchange student through an agreement between your Danish university and a Singaporean, you do not have to pay fees other than administration related.

Do you want to take your entire education at a Singaporean university, or do you arrange a stay as part of your Danish education, you can find information about tuition fees for the various universities:

  • NUS: Undergraduate and Graduate
  • SUTD: Undergraduate and Graduate

As a Danish student, you can take your SU abroad. It requires that the study stay is part of your Danish education, and that your Danish place of education approves that the study stay gives full credit. You can also apply for support through a scholarship abroad that fully or partially covers study-related expenses on approved study stays.

You can read more about the possibilities for SU abroad and a scholarship abroad at – SU abroad

At the same time, you can apply for support through private grants.

Work in Singapore

The opportunities for foreigners to find a job in Singapore are generally good, especially due to the large presence of international companies.

To work in Singapore, you must have a work permit. However, depending on how long and how you work in Singapore, different rules apply. You can find these on the website of the Singaporean Ministry of Employment.

Practical conditions


If you are going to study in Singapore, you can find accommodation through the opportunities provided by your university, or in a private apartment.

The scope of offers – or whether studio housing is offered at all – varies between the different universities. Where NUS and NTU have significant offers of student housing for international students, the offer to international students at SMU is more limited. On each university’s website you can find info about housing for international students.

As housing prices in Singapore are generally relatively high, it can be a great advantage financially to take advantage of student housing offers that are generally significantly cheaper. On the other hand, one must be aware that studio housing is often subject to special rules – for example, regarding alcohol restrictions in the area, quiet hours and the like.

If you choose to live in a private apartment, it may be a good idea to gather a larger group of students. Rental apartments in Singapore are generally expensive, and house prices in Singapore are not representative of the rest of Southeast Asia. In addition, it is a good idea to arrive in Singapore some time before starting your studies, internship or job (eg two weeks before) to look for accommodation. It will increase your chances of finding a good home at a reasonable price. Most housing agents and landlords in Singapore will not make an agreement with the tenant until they have a visa, so therefore what you can arrange from home is limited.

However, you can find out about good areas, price levels and apartments on websites such as Iproperty or Singapore Expats.

As a rule of thumb, homes – as in most other big cities – become more expensive the closer you get to the City Center. Singapore has a hugely well-functioning and inexpensive public transport system, so it is quite affordable to live outside the city center.


If you are going to study in Singapore, you must have a student visa: a so-called “student passport” that is valid during the period you are enrolled in a local university, and which allows you to travel in and out of Singapore several times.

This is applied for through the ICA – Immigration and Checkpoints Authority – and is only achieved once you have been admitted to a Singaporean educational institution.

Your Singaporean educational institution’s international office will usually be helpful in guiding you through the application process, and several universities are good at sending reminders to admitted students about important deadlines to be met regarding visas, etc.

You can also apply for a visa to Singapore through the Singaporean Consulate General in Copenhagen.

Facts about Singapore

Population: approx. 5.5 million.

Languages: English and Malaysian (as well as Mandarin and Tamil)

Employment: 2% unemployment in 2013.

Currency: Singapore Dollar.

Visa: applied for through ICA – Immigration and Checkpoints Authority or the Consulate General of Singapore in Copenhagen.

Study in Singapore