Many companies already have their presence in Singapore today. Let’s understand why many global companies like to have their presence in a country like Singapore.
Singapore has been a popular location for global businesses to set up their offices and headquarters. Because of Singapore’s strong trade and investment position, it is probably the most competitive country in Asia and also perhaps the easiest place to do business today. This is also why many international companies have chosen to have their offices set up here in Singapore. There must also be some reasons why the Trump-Kim summit took place in Singapore and not elsewhere.
Benefits of Having Your Company in Singapore
Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements
Extensive network comprising of more than fifty comprehensive Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements or DTA. A Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement is an agreement or treaty signed between Singapore and another country which relieves double taxation of income earned in Singapore by a foreigner. The list of DTAs is a long one and you may refer to the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore or IRAS’s website for the full list of DTA.
Protection of Business Ideas & Innovations
Protection for your business ideas and innovations as Singapore has strict regulations when it comes to intellectual property laws. The intellectual property system in Singapore is also seen as one of the best in the world. Singapore has also been recognised as one of the top 5 in the world in terms of the strength of our Intellectual Property (IP) protection for the past few years.
Free Trade Agreements
Many free trade agreements (FTAs) and Investment Guarantee Agreements signed with many countries. Singapore has an extensive network of more than twenty two implemented agreements consisting of both bilateral and regional free trade agreements. In simpler terms, bilateral free trade agreements are agreements signed between Singapore and a single trading partner while regional free trade agreements are agreements signed between Singapore and group trading partners. Besides free trade agreements that have already been implemented, there are also signed agreements but are not ready for use yet as well as agreements still undergoing negotiations. With Free Trade Agreements, tariffs are reduced greatly or in some agreements eliminated. The full list of FTAs can be found on Enterprise Singapore’s website.
Registering Your Business
You can easily incorporate your company online on Bizfile Website which is also the business filing portal of the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority or ACRA. One of the most common types of companies in Singapore are Private Limited companies. For a more comprehensive guide on setting up a company, you may watch the videos provided by ACRA. ACRA also has a YouTube channel and you may check it out especially if you are planning to do it yourself. You can also easily outsource the incorporation process to a registered filing agent and focus on other business priorities.
Government Agencies to Approach Depending on Your Nature of Business
If you have foreign businesses that wish to have a presence in Singapore, you may approach these government agencies that will be able to help and advise you on the processes and what you should do next :
- Banking, finance or insurance – Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)
- Legal – Legal Services Regulatory Authority (LSRA)
- Other industries – Enterprise Singapore
Finding the Right Business Space
Singapore has a wide range of selections when it comes to selecting a suitable business space to run your business. You may choose to be in the heart of the central business district (CBD), city fringe or any other areas. Depending on the nature of your business, you may choose to be in industrial factories or warehouses, offices, business parks or even choose to go for flexibility and be in a co-working space or even serviced offices. There are also business parks and specialised industrial parks such as the One-North Biopolis, Seletar Aerospace Park, Wafer Fab & Advance Display Parks as well as Jurong Island. With so many choices available, you can be sure Singapore will have a suitable space even if corporate image and branding is your priority.
Employing Staff for Your Business
Singapore has been able to attract local as well as international talents over the years. Employing suitable staff is also easy as there are now many online job portals as well as recruitment agencies or head-hunters. You can now also advertise for jobs on Facebook which has an extensive network of users. LinkedIn is also another good way to do recruitment in Singapore. With so many different ways to hire, finding suitable employees is now much easier.
In Singapore, you may also be able to get assistance from the various portal or government agencies which can assist you with your business growth.
Below are some of the government agencies which can help you to grow or start your business :
- Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)
- Economic Development Board (EDB)
- Enterprise Singapore
There are also grants to help companies and SMEs. Examples will be the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG), Enterprise Development Grant (EDG) which were also covered in Singapore’s Budget 2018. For startups, there is also the ACE grant to help new entrepreneurs looking to kick start their business.
You can also apply for an EntrePass which is a work pass for foreign entrepreneurs looking to set up a business in Singapore. For more details on the eligibility and requirements, you may refer to the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) website.
With so much support and advantages of setting up a company here in Singapore, it is no surprise why many businesses are choosing to set up their offices or headquarters here.
Source : MOM