Setting Up a Company in Singapore
The city-state of Singapore is one of the world’s most attractive locations to set up a company. It offers a world-class infrastructure ecosystem, business-friendly regulatory environment and streamlined procedures for incorporation and compliance.
A significant part of the local economy is driven by manufacturing, services and information technology. This includes electronics, chemicals and pharmaceuticals. Other key sectors include financial services, aviation and port activities. Agriculture also contributes a small proportion to the local economy. The main products are fruits and vegetables, poultry, and fish, with a large portion of the fresh fish requirement being supplied by offshore fishing vessels.
Singapore’s government is pro-business and supportive of foreign investment. This is evident by its streamlined bureaucracy, its state-of-the-art legal system and robust intellectual property protections. It also provides a wide range of business incentives and exemptions, such as the Global Ready Tax Incentives for overseas companies that relocate to Singapore and the Startup SG Talent Scheme to build a pipeline of entrepreneurial leaders.
Those wishing to operate a business in Singapore can choose from a number of different legal structures, such as a sole proprietorship, partnership or private limited company. The latter is the most popular choice, as it separates ownership and liability, and provides greater scale for expansion.
Some industries require special approvals and licences before they can operate in Singapore, such as medical institutions, moneylenders and those using certain words in their names (such as ‘bank’). Businesses may also need to register for Goods and Services Tax, which is similar to VAT in Europe, depending on the projected revenue. setting up a company in Singapore