Checklist On Setting Up A Company In Singapore
Setting Up a Business in Singapore
Thinking of setting up a business in Singapore? Here’s a helpful guide to get your company sorted and ready to go.
3 Stages to Set Up Your Business in Singapore:
- Company name registration and approval
- Submission of company’s registration documents
- Opening a bank account
The First Step
You will need to compile all the necessary documents and submit them to the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). All submission is done online.
When setting up a company, ACRA is a government body that will oversee all company registrations in Singapore. Upon submission, the government would assess your business setup and determine if your company aligns with its rules and regulations before approving them.
Moving On, Your Business Name
This is the initial stage and one of the most important steps to setting up your business in Singapore. You must pick and decide on a company name that is unique and distinct from other businesses in the city. You can ease your search with ACRA’s search feature so you can double-check and avoid duplication with your company’s name. Otherwise, ACRA will not allow you to proceed to the next steps.
Once you have settled on a name, submit the name application electronically via BizFile+. The name approval fee will cost SGD$15 and will usually take up to a day to get approved. Once ACRA approves your business name, you will have up to 120 days to submit the necessary registration documents for your business.
Prepare Your Business Registration Documents
Next, you will need to prepare a list of documents under ACRA’s requirements. Depending on the type of business you’re running in Singapore, here are the general documents you will need to assemble for registration.
- The company’s constitution
- Description of business operations or activities
- Signed consent forms for each director
- Signed consent form from the company’s secretary
- Identification and address details for each shareholder
- Business address (P.O. Box address is not allowed)
- Paid-up capital information
Once these documents are ready, you can upload them on BizFile+ for approval. The registration application fee will cost SGD$300 and will take anywhere between 3 business days or more. You possibly may need to add additional documents based on ACRA’s requirements.
Open a Bank Account in Singapore
You will receive an update of your company’s status via the BizFile+ portal if your company’s registration has been approved or not. If successful, you will receive two important documents that you will need to show when opening a bank account. This includes:
- Original email notification of business incorporation
- Latest business profile
Additional documents may include:
- Account application
- Copy of ID (Singapore citizen, PR, EP/EntrePass)
- Minimum deposit (amount differs from each bank)
Also, you can choose to open an account at any banks, whether it is local or international. However, it’s always better to open a bank account locally where your business is set up. If you are a foreigner, you will have to bring along a partner who is a Singaporean or a PR holder since it is mandatory.
Which Company Type Suits Your Business?
Before you start applying, it’s also best for you to decide which company type suits your business in Singapore such as sole proprietorship, private limited company, and limited liability partnership. For foreigners, you are only eligible to apply for a private limited company. It is also compulsory for you to hire a local director who is a Singaporean citizen, PR, or under the Employment Pass when setting up your business in Singapore.
WHAT TO DO BEFORE SETTING UP YOUR BUSINESS
Setting Up a Company in Singapore is your best option
Why Singapore Is The Top Choice For Business?
LOW TAX RATE
- Start-up Companies Tax exemption for setting up a company.
- Non-Start Up Companies Corporate tax rate at 17%.
- Tax Rebate will be extended to YA 2019 at 20% of the corporate tax payable, subject to a cap of $10,000.
- Usually, corporate taxes for incorporation companies are only 8.5% up to S$300K profits due to very attractive tax rebates for start-up companies.
- No capital gain, dividend or estate/inheritance taxes in Singapore.
POLITICAL STABLE & SECURED ENVIRONMENT
- Singapore provides a politically stable environment to entrepreneurs to setting up a business in Singapore.
- Entrepreneurs will find ease of setting up business within 24 hours. As a regional business centre in Asia, it is one of the best choices to have a headquarter in Singapore.
FREE TRADE AGREEMENT
- Robust Trade Eco-System Singapore has established 76 DTAs (Double Taxation Agreements) and 20 FTAs (Free Trade Agreements).
EASIER ACCESS TO CAPITAL
- Capital funding is easy with multiple banks providing SME loans that are supported by the government. Crowd funding, venture capital and various legitimate financing facilities are readily available to aid entrepreneurs.
STRONG INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW
- Protection for your ideas and innovations is easy and straightforward at $1,200 onward before or after setting up a business
What Are The Types Of Company?
SINGAPORE EXEMPTED PRIVATE COMPANY LIMITED BY SHARE (EPC)
PRIVATE COMPANY LIMITED BY SHARES (PC)
PUBLIC COMPANY LIMITED BY SHARES
Setting Up a Company in Singapore
Why setting up a Private Limited Company in Singapore is better?
Pte. Ltd. has a separate legal status from that of its shareholders. Shareholders have limited liability for the debts and losses of the company. Shareholders need not have to be the directors and shareholders can employ directors to manage the company.
Why setting up a Private Limited company is good for your overall Tax Planning?
A Private Limited company is also an entity that enjoys special tax exemptions and rebates every year from Singapore Government. During Singapore budget that happens on every February of the year, entrepreneurs are excited to await for tax incentives scheme. For example, the first S$100,000 of taxable income is exempt from taxes and effective tax rates can be as low as 5.6% on taxable income of up to S$300,000.
Can I transfer the ownership of the business when I leave Singapore?
Ownership of a company can be transferred and additional shareholders can be appointed at anytime when you incorporate a Pte. Ltd.
Can a foreigner set up a business in Singapore? You, as a foreign individual can set up a business with the help of a Registered Filing Agent. Your task is simplified as Licenced Singapore Corporate Secretary will have the knowledge and ability to set up the company when you are not in Singapore
What does a foreigner need to set up a company in Singapore?
Only ordinarily resident of Singapore. Singaporeans, Permanent Residents, and EntrePass holders are eligible to act a local director. The local director will also assist you with Corp Pass administrative so that you can access to all government linked website to set up the operation in breeze.
Can I use a P.O. Box for my local address?
A local Singapore address (not P.O. box) must be provided as the registered address of the company. The registered address can be either a commercial or residential address. Under the HDB’s Home Office Scheme, individuals may also use their residential address as the business address subject to prior approval from HDB. The registered office in Singapore must be both operational and accessible during normal office hours.
What can I do if I do not have an address?
Every Singaporean company must have a registered address. There are companies that provide virtual office and mailing services. You might even get hot desks.
How fast can I have my bank account once I have set up the company?
It can be as fast as the day itself because EBOS works with digital bank and local bank. Local banks will take around 3 to 4 weeks while digital bank will be speedy in processing your requirement. We encourage companies to have 2 banks set up for a speedy and smooth operation.
Is there any Singapore Government grant available for companies?
Singapore government is one of the few countries that provides a lot of subsidy and grants to new and mature companies. Find out the Singapore Government Grant here while setting up a company in Singapore.