A Comprehensive Guide to Legal and Regulatory Requirements for singapore companies

  • March 13, 2023
  • Dushyant Sharma
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Starting a Business in Singapore is quite a straightforward process. The ease can be attributed to the country's pro-business environment as well as efficient government services. But, the Singaporean Authority still employs certain legal and regulatory requirements that every willing entrepreneur needs to fulfill to start a Company in Singapore. 

Therefore, for your reference, this article will be a comprehensive guide to go through the key steps in starting a business in Singapore. We will detail every major legal as well as regulatory requirement to you in this blog.

Choosing an appropriate Corporate Structure for the proposed Company

To start a Business in Singapore, one needs to choose the right business structure. Here are some of the most common business structures adopted in Singapore:

  • Sole Proprietorship, owned and operated by a single person
  • Partnership, Owned by two or more individuals with mutual interests
  • Limited Liability Company or an LLC, a legal entity separate from its owners that limits liability for its shareholders

MostEntrepreneurs in Singapore choose to set up an LLC due as it offers a tonne of advantages, such as limited liability protection as well as tax benefits. However, the business structure that you choose must depend on the following factors:

  • Number of Owners
  • Nature of Business Activity
  • Long-term Goals of the Business

Filing the Company Incorporation application with Singaporean Authority

The applicant must properly file an application to register the Business with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority in Singapore. For such purposes, you need to prepare the following documents for Business Registration:

  • Proposed Trading Name
  • Details of the to-be-undertaken Commercial Activities
  • Registered Official Facility Address
  • Details of the following Company Executives, such as:
    • Directors
    • Shareholders
    • Company Secretary
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association, in case of an LLC

The applicant must apply online to start a Business in Singapore through the BizFile+ portal available on the ACRA website. The procedure for Company Incorporation in Singapore typically takes around 15 minutes, and the registration fee is nominal for LLCs.

Obtaining any Additional Permit(s) for undertaking Commercial Activities in Singapore

The registered Businesses, depending on the nature of their business activities, must obtain licenses or permits from the relevant Government Agencies. For instance, to open a restaurant, the Company must obtain a Food Establishment license from the NEA, i.e., the National Environment Agency (NEA).

The licenses sought varies depending on your industry, so you must do your research. You must procure the required licenses before starting your Business in Singapore. The applicant can check the requirements on the LicenceOne portal. It is a one-stop deli for Singapore's Business Licensing applications.

Opening a Corporate Bank Account post-Company Incorporation in Singapore

After Business Registration, Company must open a corporate bank account in its name to manage its finances. Most Banks in Singapore luckily offer Corporate Banking services to Companies. Here, the requirements for opening a corporate account can vary depending on the Bank sought by the Company.

Every applicant typically needs the following documents to open a Corporate Bank Account in most Banks in Singapore:

  • ACRA business profile
  • Identification Documents for the following:
    • Directors 
    • Shareholders
  • Board Resolution authorizing the Corporate Account
  • Proof of Business Official Address
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association, in case of an LLC

Applying for Tax Registration with the Taxation Authority in Singapore

All Businesses starting in Singapore must apply for Tax Registration with the IRAS, i.e., the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore. The Corporations must register for the following taxes:

  • Goods and Services Tax or GST, for the supply of Goods and Services in Singapore
  • Corporate Income Tax, for income tax on the revenue of your Business

You can accomplish the company incorporation process in Singapore online through the IRAS website. However, you must provide the IRAS with your business registration number and other relevant details.

Appointing the requisite Personnel for running Business Operations in Singapore

To hire employees for your Business in Singapore, the Company is expected to comply with Singapore's Employment regulations, which include employee registrations for the Central Provident Fund. The CPF is a mandatory social security savings plan for employees working in Singapore.

To know more about the requirements as well as benefits of starting a Business in Singapore, connect with the Incorporation Experts at Registrationwala. 

Also read:  Company Registration in Singapore for Foreigners


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Dushyant Sharma
Author: Dushyant Sharma

Hey there, I'm Dushyant Sharma. With the extensive knowledge I've gained in past 8 years, I have been creating content on various subjects such as banking, insurance, telecom, and all the important registration and licensing processes for various companies. I'm here to help everyone with my expertise in these areas through my articles.

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