Singapore company registration

Singapore Company Registration

  • How to set up a company in Singapore

    1. Decide on three potential names for the company and list them in your order of preference. The name must be sufficiently dissimilar from other companies already registered in Singapore. Check the availability of your ideal Singapore company name now;
    2. Name up to 50 shareholders for the company. Companies and individuals may be shareholders, but companies with corporate shareholders require an annual audit;
    3. Name your company’s directors, at least one of whom must be resident in Singapore;
    4. Appoint a company secretary to manage your company’s statutory administration and annual returns. The company secretary must be located in Singapore and may be an individual or a company;
    5. Determine the number of shares to be issued to each shareholder and the price to be paid up for each share. There are no restrictions on your choice of share price;
    6. The shareholders finalise and sign a memorandum and articles of association to govern the management and control of your business. Singaporean company law provides a standard document that will suit most of our Clients’ needs, and Healy Consultants’ legal team can draft amendments to fit any specific requirements you may have;
    7. Once the required documentation is complete, submit the incorporation package to the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA);
    8. Within 3 days of submission, the company will be incorporated;
    9. Once incorporated, the company can apply for a corporate bank account. With Healy Consultants’ help, this can be achieved without you needing to travel;
    10. The company can now register for GST, apply for employee visas and obtain government grants and incentives.
  • Why set up a company in Singapore?

    1. A Singapore limited liability company is incorporated within one week, with merely one shareholder and one director of any nationality. There is no minimum share capital and our Clients do not travel to complete the engagement;
    2. A Singapore company is the best holding company in the world because:
      • If properly structured by Healy Consultants, a Singapore holding company will not suffer corporation tax on all forms of international income;
      • Through its network of 75 double taxation treaties global withholding tax is minimized when extracting funds from international subsidiary companies;
      • Singapore does not charge corporate tax on foreign dividends when the company paying the dividend was subject to tax of at least 15% (even if that tax was legally avoided, e.g. through a tax holiday);
      • Singapore boasts fair and reasonable transfer pricing rules.
    3. A Singapore company is an excellent global trading company because:
      • If properly structured by Healy Consultants, international sales are legally tax exempt;
      • A Singapore company looks good to customers and suppliers;
      • For a Singapore business registration, Healy Consultants can open a supporting corporate bank account in every country in the world including USA, Germany, Dubai, South Africa, Brazil, Australia, Japan, eliminating the need to register local companies in each continent.
    4. Singapore is the perfect low tax headquarters in Asia because:
      • If properly structured by Healy Consultants, a Singapore resident company will not suffer tax on i) international income ii) all forms of dividends and iii) capital gains;
      • For resident companies, the first three years’ net profits under US$125,000 are tax exempt. Taxable profits over this amount pay corporate income tax of 17%, the second lowest rate in APAC;
      • Regional withholding tax rates are minimized through the 75 double taxation treaties signed by Singapore. Thus extracting funds from regional subsidiary companies in the form of dividends, management fees and royalties. Refer to this table to view how regional withholding tax rates are minimized;
      • Because Singapore is a member of ASEAN, companies incorporated here pay no import duty when trading with other ASEAN member countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.
    5. Singapore is a great import and export hub because: i) it boasts the world’s 2nd busiest port and the world’s 12th busiest cargo airport ii) it hosts a huge number of international trading companies and supporting banks, a top source of trade finance and iii) it attracts the world’s leading freight forwarders, shipping companies and insurance companies;
    6. Since Singapore is the most politically stable country in Asia, it boasts a reputable regulatory environment. Consequently, business registration in Singapore is the perfect option for signing regional contracts with customers and suppliers or for registering intellectual property;
    7. Since Singapore is the most proficient English speaking country in Asia, international entrepreneurs find it easy to communicate with suppliers and Clients. Also, all official documents are written in English;
    8. Singapore boasts a highly skilled labour force with a literacy rate of over 96% and a computer literacy rate of 99%. Furthermore, most skilled employees are bilingual in English and Mandarin or Malay;
    9. Starting a business in Singapore is easy with minimal corruption, minimal business restrictions, and low bureaucracy. A foreign owned company can invest in every business sector without restriction. This is why Singapore boasts the first place ranking on the 2015 world doing business survey, measuring ease of starting a business, paying taxes and getting credit, amongst other factors;
    10. The Singapore Government i) offers a multitude of attractive government grants to new companies and ii) allows all tax returns to be submitted online.
  • Best uses for a Singapore company

    1. Holding company or regional headquarters: Singapore is an ideal location in which to establish your company’s head office in the Asia Pacific region. The country’s highly skilled labour force, excellent infrastructure and business-friendly environment have made Singapore the jurisdiction from which a great number of blue-chip firms manage their Asian operations. Factors in favour of registering your APAC headquarters in Singapore include:
      • Singapore’s territorial taxation rules mean that income from i) foreign subsidiaries ii) non-Singaporean operations around the world and iii) capital gains are legally tax exempt;
      • Through Singapore’s network of 75 double taxation treaties, withholding tax is minimized when receiving profits from international subsidiaries and thereby allowing our Clients to avoid double taxation;
      • Thanks to Singapore’s bilingual education system and its focus on English, most skilled Singaporean workers are fluent in English and either Mandarin or Malay. This means that they can communicate effectively with Clients, suppliers and subsidiaries in Asia and around the world;
      • The Singaporean government provides a tax incentive for companies registering their headquarters in the country, reducing the headline rate of tax to 15% for up to 5 years under the headquarters programme; and
      • Singapore is a developed financial hub, increasing the access to capital for businesses established in the country.

    2. Setting up an international trading company in Singapore means that your business will benefit from:
      • Legal tax exemption on international sales if properly structured;
      • The strength of Singapore’s reputation as a business and financial hub when dealing with Clients, service providers and sources of finance; and
      • Singapore’s status as a major shipping and logistics centre, meaning that distribution is more easily managed here than in many competing jurisdictions.

Company registration

  • Time to incorporate: One week
  • Cost to set up: US$7,940
  • Minimum capital: 0 (no par value)
  • Registered office: Registered address

Required appointments

  • Shareholders: 1
  • Directors: 1
  • Company secretary: Yes (resident)
  • Resident director: Yes

Key facts

  • Corporate tax rate: 17%
  • Corporate tax base: Territorial
  • Shelf companies: Available
  • Main company type: Private Limited

Frequently asked questions

Contact us

For additional information on our business registration services in Singapore, please email us at Alternatively please contact our in-house country expert, Ms. Karen Lee, directly:
singapore business federation acra - accounting and corporate regulatory authority Singapore Ministry of Manpower (MOM) Institute of Singapore chartered accountant (ISCA) Institute of Singapore chartered accountant (ISCA) saicsa icsa - institute of chartered secretaries and administrators SIngapore exchange ltd - The Asian Gateway | SGX