Starting a Business in Singapore
Singapore is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. Its people and surroundings are an interesting mix of the new and old cultures. You get the best of both worlds. Additionally, because of its special geographic position and importance in Southeast Asia, Singapore plays an important role in international trade. In fact, a recent report by World Bank ranked Singapore as the best city in the world to start a business.
How to Establish and Register Your Company
For foreigners wishing to start a business form partnerships in Singapore, the process and steps are quite easy and stress free than the case in most other countries (international).
Why Choose Singapore to Start Your Business?
Here are some concrete reasons as to why Singapore is one of the premier business centers in the Asia region:
Why You Should Start Your Business in Singapore
General Information About Forming A Company
Though it does not seem to be difficult to form a private limited company, many times, the application fails simply because requirements are not met and guidelines are not adhered to. This is partly due to the inability of business owners to understand the requirements and procedures of company formation.
In order for applicants not be charged with failure to comply with the processes, here are some more information and detailed tips for company incorporation.
- Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) is the national regulator of business entities and public accountants in Singapore. Generally, its role is to achieve synergies between the monitoring of corporate compliance with disclosure requirements and regulation of public accountants and finance performing statutory audit. Since there are many cultures living together in Singapore as mentioned earlier, it limits the company name that cannot be something that is vulgar or offensive to any of them. This important step needs to be sorted out before the start of the registration process from the registrar.
- However, in Singapore, a foreigner is not allowed to register a company by himself. The policy is, at least that one officer – namely the company director – should be a local resident. A resident is defined as someone who is a Singapore citizen or who holds valid residency passes such as Permanent Residency or other legal passes like Entrepass, Employment Pass or Dependent Pass. It is free to nominate as many directors as you like.Additionally, at least one shareholder is required. The person holding the positions of shareholder and director can be the same and the shareholder does not need to be a local. There are also other shareholding requirements to be met. Another thing to be aware of is that a valid local Singapore address which cannot be a PO Box is mandatory. Otherwise, it may get stuck when proceeding with the incorporation process.Business entrepreneurs frequently need to travel. The Singapore’s pro-business policies let investors as well as entrepreneurs running companies within the nation to enter and exit relatively easy from the country via special passes and visas. If applications are submitted online, foreigners from India and China can get approval within 1 day. For foreign nationals from other countries, you may want to visit to the ICA website where it is stated about the visa details. You can also get details about other exemptions and updated regulations.
- Once the company is established, the owner has to open a corporate bank account which can be with any of the local or international banks in Singapore. In essence, it is important to ensure that proper documents are submitted in keeping with the requirements. It is also required to appoint at least one local company secretary for the company to handle ongoing statutory compliance matters under the section of The Singapore Companies Act. This is an important position and does not just include filing and typing out notes.
In addition to setting up a business in company, you may also like to open up a personal bank account. This certainly helps with official payments. Setting aside work money from personal money is extremely crucial when “working out tax” time comes along. In order to open up a bank account, you must bring along passports and personal signatures of al directors, secretaries, and staffs that needs to access the account. Although the form could be complex, but the staff behind the counter are usually helpful.
- You can find the general requirements and procedures needed for incorporating a Singapore Company below to get more information: Company Incorporation Requirements and Company Secretary Requirements. If you have not known the licenses required for different industries, you can read up on Singapore business licenses and how to apply them.
Singapore – Lucrative Place for Expats
Singapore is considered to be the best country for expat entrepreneurs. Recently, a study revealed that 7 out of 10 expat entrepreneurs are definitely receiving a lot from their startup in Singapore. They say that one of the benefits of starting up a business in Singapore is the ability (time / investment / stock) to grow very fast. Thus, it is obvious that initial capital laid out would definitely receive returns.
So, if you’re thinking about starting up a business in Singapore, the first place you should check out is the primary Singapore government (trade / tax) website.
Entrepreneurs wishing to register their company/companies in Singapore need not be Singaporeans themselves. The solution would be to send an application to receive an Employment Pass if they wish to be actively involved in running their business in Singapore on a daily basis. There are multiple agents and consultants who can provide more information on this endeavor.