Singapore continues to attract a lot of foreign investors to set up their operations in the country. This has led to an increase in the demand for company incorporation services from corporate consultants. The excellent policies of the government, the low rate of corporate and income tax, the modern infrastructure and the stability of the government are all reasons why both foreign and local entrepreneurs want to start their company in Singapore.
The world bank has recognized Singapore as the best place to do business. The government has entered into Double Taxation Agreements and Free Trade Agreements with many countries. These agreements help the Singapore businesses, exporters and entrepreneurs. Added to this is the priority in access to certain sectors, the excellent protection to intellectual property and tax concessions. The government aids Singapore businesses by way of their support in the form of tax concessions and grants. Apart from this, there are competent agencies to help investors who are wondering how to set up a company in Singapore.
Understanding The Company Incorporation Procedure
When you are ready to bring your business dream to reality you must start understanding the procedure for incorporating a company here. The best thing for you to do is to take the support of a good corporate consultant who can offer all services about company formation and operation. They must help you in opening the company with full compliance with the local laws. You must know what services they should provide you so that you can know what you must expect from them.
For foreign companies, it may be difficult making many visits to the country for the incorporation services. The Accounting And Corporate Regulatory Authority or simply called the ACRA has advanced its systems so much that all documents can be submitted online. This makes it easy for foreign companies to submit their documents online using digital signatures. This means that they don’t have to make multiple visits or stay in Singapore for a long time to get the company registered. The consultants can take care of everything.
#1. Company Incorporation Service
All businesses must incorporate their companies in Singapore. The service providers will guide you through the process. They also various packages depending on the services that you require. Some of you might need incorporation along with employment pass to relocate to Singapore. Whether you are a local investor or a foreign company there is always a package that will include all the services you need to set up a company in Singapore.
These packages include a variety of services like nominee director service, registered address, corporate secretarial services, etc. Different clients ask for various services. Some companies may need to secure an employment pass for their directors to be placed in Singapore. The agencies will help with the employment pass. The idea of these different packages is to ensure that all your requirements are satisfied with any one of the packages.
#2. Get Your Nominee Director
One of the conditions for incorporating your company is to have at least one resident director who is an ordinary resident of the country. Foreign companies will find it difficult to find a suitable person as a resident director. It is important to find the right person as the wrong individual can damage the image of the company. A person with an employment pass can also hold the post of resident director. But the EP can be secured only if the company is incorporated.
To get out of this situation the corporate consultants offer the services of their persons as a nominee director. The ACRA permits the appointment of a nominee director. The nominee director will help in incorporating the company. Once the company is incorporated, then the foreigner can get the employment pass for the company and relocate to Singapore. At this time the nominee director will resign and hand overcharges to the foreigner who can now become the resident director.
#3. Appointing A Nominee Shareholder
Every incorporated company in Singapore must have one individual or company as a shareholder. For reasons of privacy, some people prefer to find a nominee shareholder for their company. This service is not offered by many now because of the insistence of the Singapore government to maintain complete transparency of the process.
#4. Corporate Secretarial Services
One of the other conditions for incorporating a company is that you must appoint at least one company secretary within six months from the date of incorporation. For most foreign companies and many small and medium local companies, this condition is difficult to fulfill. The company secretary is a very responsible position in the company. He or she is tasked with ensuring that the company is run by the directors as per the company laws. The company must also not deviate from the company constitution.
The company secretary must reside in Singapore . The person must be qualified enough to know about the company laws in Singapore. He or she must have enough experience in running a company because they are responsible for filing the returns on time and deciding on the year-end for the company. If the company wants to appoint a person of this stature then it will cost them very high. A director of the company can hold this post, but that must not be the only director of the company. The best way out of the situation is to avail the corporate secretarial services offered by the consultants where they will provide a competent person. They will also ensure that your company is run in full compliance with local laws.
#5. Registered Office Address
This is another condition you must satisfy when incorporating the company. Every company must have a registered office address in Singapore. This must be a physical address. The need for such an address is for the authorities and your auditors to send correspondence. The ACRA doesn’t accept post box numbers. It is essential to get an office in a prestigious address for your business. But this may not be possible when you register your company.
The corporate service providers will offer their address as the registered office address. This can also be availed as part of your incorporation services package. The service providers will receive your mails and forward them to you.
#6. Securing A Business License
Certain businesses in Singapore need a business license. These include private schools, employment agencies, food businesses, travel agents, financial institutions, distributors of alcoholic beverages and childcare centers. The ACRA mandates this as part of the registration process. For securing your business license you will need a local executive director. The person will have to sign the application and other documents for the license. Corporate consultants will help you with this license without any trouble.
#7. Opening Your First Bank Account
You need to open your account in a bank when you open your company. It is a very important step for a new company because you must identify the right bank which will suit all your needs. The bank should be able to play a supportive role in your business. For this, you must know which bank is most suitable for you. Foreign investors may not be very familiar with the bankers in Singapore. The consultants are the best people for this purpose.
The bank accounting procedure is also very stringent in Singapore. The directors and shareholders must be physically present in the bank for signing the documents. The opening of a bank account in a prestigious bank in Singapore can take a long time. When you opt for services for setting up a company in Singapore you can also opt for their bank account opening services. Some of the service providers include this in their package.
#8. Other Corporate Services
Among the attractions in Singapore for businesses from outside is the low tax rate. The other benefits include excellent manpower that is highly educated and proficient in English. But to exploit these benefits you must have full knowledge of the scenario here. The corporate consultants provide all the services that will help take full advantage of the benefits. The taxation services will help you reduce your tax burden legally to the maximum possible. You can also stay compliant by filing the returns on time.
You will need good employees to run the company. Having a good manpower agent is key to getting the best talents in the country. The HR companies will also help you draw up the various agreements and ensure a smooth relationship between the company and its employees. The manpower agencies will also help you get all the work permits for the employees.
#9. Service To Small And Medium Companies
The small and medium companies need a lot of support as they are constrained with finances and manpower. The consultants in Singapore have helped many of the small and medium businesses to be set up easily.