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7 main advantages of Singapore for foreign businesses

Southeast Asia is becoming an increasingly interesting and promising business destination every year. Compared to Europe, the Asian consumer market is much wider. Technology is developing rapidly here, and new opportunities for exports and e-commerce are opening up.

The two main Asian business hubs are Hong Kong and Singapore. In the ranking of ease of doing business, which is compiled annually by the World Bank, Singapore for many years in a row been steadily ahead of Hong Kong. While Hong Kong as a jurisdiction is geared more towards doing business with China, Singapore is an internationally neutral jurisdiction with the highest trust ratings in the world.

It particularly attracts foreigners by its simple and straightforward rules of doing business. It is very easy for foreign entrepreneurs to register a company and conduct business operations here, even remotely. The government offers tax incentives for small and medium-sized businesses and actively supports various projects and start-ups. Plus favourable tax rates, as well as a prestigious white jurisdiction and lack of corruption.

We've done an overview of Singapore's top 7 advantages in terms of doing business for foreign entrepreneurs.

The main entry point to ASEAN markets

Asia's position as the economic centre of the world is becoming more and more confident every year. In terms of conditions for entrepreneurship, the leader among the countries of the Asian region is Singapore. The country has a stable financial situation: there is no inflation or currency fluctuations from which Russian entrepreneurs suffer. It is easy and transparent to deal with bureaucratic intricacies and inspections. But the main advantage of Singapore is that it is an excellent entry point into the promising markets of the countries of Southeast Asia - Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines, as well as India, China and Australia. For exporters from other countries, including Russia, the region is a tidbit.

Billion dollar audience for e-commerce

Compared to the CIS market, the Asian and ASEAN market is much bigger. More than 800 million people live there. And another 2,600 million in India and China. In Asia, e-commerce is developed. If your company is engaged in trade or e-commerce, business in Singapore opens up access to a new large audience with serious buying power.

Easy and fast company incorporation procedure

Company registration in Singapore is the easiest and fastest of all Asian countries. Minimum share capital starts at 1 SGD (0.70 USD) . For most types of businesses a license is not required. In those cases where a licence is required - the rules for obtaining one are transparent and simple. Locals can start a business in 30 minutes from the comfort of their own homes. For foreigners, the process is longer. By law, foreign nationals need help from certified registrars, but all formalities can be completed in 2-3 days if desired.

Incentives for small and medium-sized businesses

In Singapore there are a number of significant benefits to small and medium-sized businesses - that is, companies with a turnover of less than 10,000,000 SGD. The owner need only register the company, open a bank account, and submit accounts once a year. This is a huge advantage for service sector companies - restaurants, cafes, salons, shops, e-commerce, IT companies and start-ups.

Government support for innovative projects and start-ups

Singapore is one of the few countries in the world that actively supports small and medium-sized businesses. The government allocates various grants and subsidies for the development of promising projects. New programmes pop up every year. For example, the country is interested in preserving and reproducing natural resources. If you are involved in technological and innovative developments in this field, you have a good chance of participating in state support programmes.

Attractive tax rates

Singapore is a country with a single-tier tax system. Moreover, local rates are quite moderate compared to most countries in the world. The standard corporate tax rate is 17%. There are tax breaks for young companies, which are valid for the first three years after incorporation. For companies incorporated in and after 2020 the following tax exemptions will apply:

First 100,000 SGD of income - 75% of the amount is tax exempt,
Subsequent SGD 200,000 - 50% of the amount is exempt,
Above SGD 200,000 - full rate of 17%

For companies older than three years, partial tax deductions apply:
First SGD 10,000 - 75% of the amount is tax exempt,
Subsequent SGD 190,000 - 50% of the amount is tax exempt,
Above SGD 200,000 - full rate of 17%.

Offshore companies are also exempt from tax in Singapore.

The income tax rates for individuals range from 0 to 22%. There is a progressive taxation system - the higher the income, the higher the tax rate.

For example, at a salary of 6,000 SGD per month the tax would be 8-10%.
There is no tax on dividends, which is important for investment and holding companies.

Extensive opportunities for bank account holders

A bank account for foreigners in Singapore can be opened in 1-3 weeks, depending on the bank chosen. Lack of exchange control, multi-currency accounts, stable Singapore dollar exchange rate, reliable jurisdiction with an excellent international reputation, absolute banking secrecy and confidentiality are the main advantages of banks in the city-state. You can link popular international payment systems like Stripe, Paypal and others to your account, quickly send and receive international payments, and manage your account remotely.

If you develop your business, as well as appreciate the quality of life, stable economy, absence of corruption and want to conduct business under simple and clear rules in the global market - open a company in Singapore. The opportunities this country offers to foreign entrepreneurs will take you to a new professional and financial level!

About us

RSBU Pte Ltd is a Singapore-based registered filing agent (license FA20190141), corporate services provider and Employment Agency (Comprehensive Licence 21C0852) based in Singapore. We assist local and international clients with all their business needs in Singapore including but limited to company incorporation, corporate secretarial, immigration, accounting and tax, consulting and other business support services.

Our team of specialists are ready to assist you with all aspects of market analysis, incorporation and servicing of legal entities in Singapore, bank account setup, accounting and tax reporting, licensing and permit acquisition, work and long-term visas as well as permanent residence in Singapore.

Since our establishment in 2013, we have assisted thousands of companies in addressing their business needs in Singapore. Our dedication to excellence has earned us prestigious awards, including the Singapore Entrepreneur 100 Award 2022 and the SME 500 Award 2023.

RSBU is a one-stop solution for your business needs in Singapore!

Don’t hesitate to contact us today if you have any questions or require support with your business needs in Singapore.