How to Register a Business in Singapore: Easy steps to Company Incorporation
No matter what country you are in. Setting up a business isn’t straightforward. There are always technical jargon and local legal requirements you have to follow. Also, you are bound to fulfill the local financial regulations. And these may be wildly different from your own country. So even if you are well versed with finance laws or legal requirements. Those laws and requirements do not apply everywhere.
Different countries have tried different approaches like zero-tax zones to try to incentivize more companies to move to their countries. However, none have been more successful than Singapore. So what is it that sets Singapore apart?
Let’s take the example of Singapore business incorporation and see why Singapore is such an attractive and business-friendly country.
For setting up a company you need to have a lot of ideas mapped out. Like you need to know how many shareholders your company will have. And whether they are all humans or legal entities. You can also be the only shareholder. Share capital needs to be specified. Although it can be increased at any time.
Directors must include one legal resident of Singapore and all of them must be natural persons. A local legal resident company secretary must be appointed. Though the company has a good 6 months to do this. To store the statutory documents of the company there must be a legal address of the company in Singapore. Company names have to be pre-approved before the company can be incorporated. The government charges a total of S$315 for approving the name and registering the company.
You start with getting the name approved. Then you get the documents ready and then apply for Singapore business incorporation. If your company falls under “regulated businesses” like law, broker, finance, or school. Then it will be referred to the relevant government authority. This is one of the few cases which can cause a delay in company registration.
4 main documents are needed including the company constitutions, signed consent by each of the directors, signed consent by the company secretary and identification, and residential details of everyone who works for the company including officers and directors.
Now if you are using a service provider(more on that in a second), then you will also need the professional qualification of everyone in the company.
Now here’s the amazing part, if you have all of the above-mentioned documents ready. The entire company registration process is online and does not need you to visit a single government office!
This is a testament to the Singaporean government’s business-friendly practices. Businessmen are busy people and they don’t want to waste their time commuting around town and getting approvals from multiple offices. And more importantly, it’s a waste of time even if they send someone on their behalf. Singapore has wiped its hands clean of useless bureaucracy. The government runs like a well-oiled machine.
But this is just the tip of the iceberg!
Even these simple and easy to follow steps are still a handful. So Singapore offers even more convenience.
Just pick an experience Corporate Service Provider and you will get the following steps automated:
- Choosing a company secretary – How else do you plan to find a local qualified person especially if you are not local yourself? This outsources the trickiest part to your service provider.
- Applying for company name approval and company incorporation.
- Setting up a local corporate bank account after the company is incorporated.
But this is not all, once your company is incorporated. There are still a lot of legal requirements. These include:
- Maintaining minutes of the meeting of Director’s meetings
- Maintaining Statutory registers
- Preparation and sending minutes of the annual general meeting to shareholders
- Filing of annual returns of the company
All of this paperwork is again just a hassle for the business owner as these will not help in increasing profits. So Singaporean service providers are happy to take all of this off your hands and automate it for a nominal fee. By now there is such a large number of service providers that competition is very tough. This has led to professional levels of service easily available and at minimum cost.
Actually what Singapore has done is automate all the legal and regulatory overheads of running a business. If you were to do this yourself you would have to work to ensure you are following the latest legal regulations. This may be updated at any time during the year. Thus outsourcing these to a specialized service provider decreases your risk of lagging behind regulations and making a mistake.
There are a few more technical aspects you might need to consider. You need a resident director nominee. This can be also be purchased as a service from such service providers!
You or your employees may need to visit Singapore for business purposes. Here again, the service providers are well equipped to help you procure an employment pass for business purposes.
Companies may require mail handling services and a physical address in Singapore. This can also be managed.
Catering to the needs of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as well as corporate giants; Singapore’s service providers are some of the best in the world and you won’t be disappointed when you use their services to set up your company in Singapore!