Why should I incorporate a Private Limited Company in Singapore
Along with being one of the world’s top financial centres with wide availability of funding and assistance schemes for start-ups or established companies, the city-state of Singapore is also known for its ease of doing business and pro-business regulatory environment, along with a very attractive corporate tax framework.
Singapore also has comprehensive trade agreements with over 100 regions of the world, excellent connectivity, strategic geographical location, proximity to world’s largest emerging markets including India and China, and robust IP protection.
What is the major advantage of incorporating a private limited company in Singapore?
Apart from the huge tax advantage, and benefits of over 100 comprehensive trade agreements, one of the major advantages of incorporating a private limited company is that it is a separate legal entity and is limited by shares. As a result, shareholders of a Singapore company are not liable for its debts and losses beyond their amount of share capital.
What are the different types of business structures in Singapore?
There are five different structures to choose from – Sole-Proprietorship, Partnership, Limited Partnership, and Limited Liability Partnership (LLP), and the most common and flexible business entity – the Private Limited Company (applicable for non-Singaporeans and permanent residents). Do note that all companies in Singapore must be registered and abide by the country’s Companies Act.
What are the key requirements to incorporate a company in Singapore?
What are the various types of companies in Singapore depending on the number of shares and types of shareholders?
What are public companies in Singapore?
A public company can offer shares, debentures and other interests to the public. It can have unlimited number of shareholders, and can be unlisted or listed on a stock exchange. When a private company has grown and has more than 50 shareholders, it must be converted to a public company limited by shares.
It is important to note that the compliance requirements for public companies are much higher than that of private companies.
What is treated as a private company in Singapore?
For a private company in Singapore, maximum number of shareholders is limited to 50.
Importantly, the memorandum and articles of association of a Singapore company puts restriction on its members to transfer their shares in the company.
What is an exempt private company in Singapore?
A private company limited by shares is classified as a exempt private company (EPC) in Singapore. An EPC has:
What documents are needed to incorporate a company in Singapore?
Copy of passport, proof of residential address and bank reference letter for every non-resident shareholder and director; whereas for each resident shareholder/director, documents needed are a copy of Singapore ID, and copy of passport for foreign individuals.
Meanwhile, if the shareholder is a corporate entity, documents needed are copy of the parent company’s certificate of incorporation, and copy of official documents reflecting the registered address and directors of the parent company.
What’s the minimum paid up capital required to register a company in Singapore?
In Singapore, a company can be registered with a minimum paid up capital of S$1 (or its equivalent in any currency).
Shareholders and Directors
Does Singapore allow 100 percent foreign shareholding of a company?
What is the minimum and maximum amount of shareholders permitted in a Singapore company?
In Singapore, a private company limited by shares must have at least one shareholder and no more than 50 shareholders.
Is it compulsory for a private limited company in Singapore to have a Singapore resident company director?
Yes, every Singapore company must have at least one director who is “ordinarily” resident in Singapore, which means either a Singapore citizen, a Singapore permanent resident, an employment pass/entrepreneur pass holder, or a dependant’s pass with a residential address in Singapore.
Importantly, a company director and shareholder can be the same or different person in Singapore.
For those who wish to set up a Singapore company but cannot relocate to Singapore, we provide the services of a resident nominee director on a long-term or temporary basis. This can help you in fulfilling the Singapore companies’ statutory requirement of a resident director.
What is defined as a small company in Singapore?
In Singapore, a company qualifies as a small company if:
For a company which is part of a group:
How much time it takes to incorporate a company in Singapore?
Easy answer is, just under a day. As part of our Singapore company incorporation services, we can get your company registered with the Accounting Corporate Regulatory Authority within one day.
Do I need to be present in Singapore to incorporate a company?
No, it’s not needed. All signing of documentations can be done electronically or virtually.
Address and Secretary
Is it compulsory for a private limited company in Singapore to have a local registered address?
Yes, a registered address is required in Private Limited Company registration. It is mandatory for every company registered in Singapore to have a local address as all official correspondences are sent to it. Though some businesses are allowed to use residential addresses.
Also, the official address of your company must be a physical address and cannot be a PO Box.
Is it compulsory for a private limited company in Singapore to have a resident company secretary?
Yes, the Singapore Company Act mandates that all companies in Singapore must appoint a company secretary within six months of incorporation, whose is responsible for ensuring all regulatory compliances of your company.
You can outsource this requirement to us, under the ambit of our corporate services and we will take care of your company secretary requirements.
Is it compulsory for a private limited company in Singapore to have an auditor?
In Singapore, all companies, unless exempted under Section 205B, or 205C, of the Companies Act, are required to appoint a company auditor within three months of company incorporation.
Though before July 2015, exempt private companies with yearly revenue of less than S$5 million were exempted from audit compliance. Now, that has been replaced by a “small company” concept
Does opening a bank account in Singapore requires physical presence?
Depends. As some – though not all – banks may require you to be present for the corporate bank account opening process.
How will I receive the documents for my newly incorporated Singapore company?
We will email you the electronic copies of all relevant documents as soon as the company is incorporated. All copies are also uploaded in a secured dedicated project dashboard which we will provide.
Can we increase the paid-up capital for my Singapore company at a later stage?
Yes, paid-up capital of a Singapore company can be increased at any stage after incorporation.
Can I apply for a residency pass to live and work in Singapore?
Yes, you can apply for an employment pass, entrepreneur pass, or a permanent resident visa depending on your circumstances.
Tax related matters
Can I be a tax resident of Singapore?
Yes, you can be a tax resident of Singapore and enjoy Singapore tax rates if you;
a. stay or work in Singapore
i. for at least 183 days in a calendar year; or
ii. continuously for three consecutive years; or
b. work in Singapore for a continuous period straddling two calendar years and your total period of stay is at least 183 days.
This applies to foreign employees who entered Singapore from 1 Jan 2007 but excludes directors of a company, public entertainers or professionals.
If you are issued with a work pass that is valid for at least one year, you will also be treated as a tax resident upfront. However, your tax residency status will be reviewed at the point of tax clearance when you cease your employment based on the tax residency rules. If your stay in Singapore is less than 183 days, you will be regarded as a non-resident.
What are Singapore corporate tax rates?
Singapore corporates are taxed at a headline rate of 17%. However there are a multitude of deductible expenses available to reduce the tax rate to a very low number. Contact us directly so that we can advise more.
Am I subjected to personal income tax if I am a tax resident of Singapore but the income is generated from outside Singapore?
In Singapore, foreign income remitted into Singapore into a personal account is not taxable. So DTA and UTC is not relevant.
Does Singapore charge withholding tax?
Withholding tax is only charged when the Singapore entity or individual makes a payment to a non-resident (company or individual). The payer is required to remit the withheld amount to IRAS.
Zero-risk policy and money-back guarantee
What is a zero-risk policy?
For any company we setup or any project we take on, it all comes with a zero-risk policy. That means we do not take your money until the pre-agreed outcome is delivered. For e.g if we say we will provide you a company with a multi-currency account, if you feel uncomfortable forking out money at the start without confirmation of delivery, we may ask you to escrow your money with our payment partners, and let the payment partner release the money to us when the goods and services are delivered. Our promise to you is never to take anything from you if we do not deliver what we are supposed to.
What is a money back guarantee?
Our money-back guarantee applies to companies we set up. We would set up your company within 24 hours after receiving all the documentation and payment upfront, and if we don't, the money is refunded.
Can I trust the escrow service provider?
We use Tazapay, which is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, so they are legit and would hold your money securely until release. If there is a default, you can make a police report against them and your case would be handled just as fairly as anyone making a report.
Can the money back guarantee apply if I use the escrow service?
No, you can only choose to be subjected to either the escrow service or the 24-hour money back guarantee.