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Singapore Company Incorporation FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions about Singapore Company Formation


  • What are Private Companies?

    Maximum number of shareholders is limited to 50 and the memorandum and articles of association restricts the right of its members to transfer their shares in the company.


    A private company limited by shares can be classified as a exempt private company.

    The key characteristics of an exempt private company is:

    • No more than 20 shareholders; and
    • All the shareholders are individuals.
    • Exempt private companies with an annual revenue of less than S$5 Million are exempted from audit requirements and are not required to file financial statements with the ACRA.

    It is also exempted from prohibitions against loans to its directors or to companies related to its directors.

  • What is a company?

    A company is a business entity registered under the Companies Act, Chapter 50. Most companies in Singapore are private companies limited by shares and are recognized by the suffix “Pte Ltd”.

  • Does a Singapore subsidiary require a registered address in Singapore?

    Yes, all Singapore companies and subsidiaries need to have a registered address in Singapore.

  • What is the difference between a director and a shareholder?

    own the company and are entitled to the profits of the company.

    managing and overseeing the company operations, dealing with the everyday responsibilities.

  • Who is ordinarily resident in Singapore?

    A Singapore citizen, Singapore Permanent Resident or EP holder who is residing in Singapore.

Corporate Tax

Are there any restrictions regarding moving funds between Singapore and overseas?

No, funds can be moved freely for legitimate business purposes and there are no exchange controls in Singapore

What is the corporate tax rate in Singapore?

The corporate tax rate is 17%

 <Tax exemption>

Newly incorporated companies will be exempted from 75% corporate income tax rate on the first S$100,000 taxable income for each of the first three tax filing years if they meet the following conditions:

  • Incorporated in Singapore
  • A tax resident in Singapore
  • Has no more than 20 shareholders
  • At least 1 individual shareholder holding more than 10% of shares

Income tax filings for newly incorporated companies in the first 3 years:

4.25% on the first S$100,000 on taxable income 
8.50% on the next S$100,000

Income tax filings after the first 3 years:

4.25% on the first S$10,000 on taxable income
8.5% on the next S$190,000

What is the difference between a resident and non-resident Singapore company?

In Singapore, the tax residence status of a company depends on where the control and management of its business is exercised. A company is tax resident in Singapore if the control and management of its business is exercised in Singapore.

The basis of taxation for a resident company and non-resident company is generally the same. However, there are some benefits that a resident company can enjoy that a non-resident would not, for example benefiting from any applicable Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreements and various tax exemptions.

What is the difference between full exemption and partial exemption for Singapore start-ups?

Full corporate tax rate is 4.25% on normal chargeable income up to S$100,000.

8.5% on normal chargeable income up to S$200,000 for the first three consecutive tax filing years. 

Thus is only granted to start-ups that meet the following criteria:

  • Singapore incorporated company
  • Tax resident in Singapore for the applicable year
  • Have no more than 20 shareholders in that year,
  • At least 10% of the shareholders must be individuals
  • Should a company not meet the requisite criteria, it would still be eligible for a partial exemption.

Will a Singapore Branch qualify for any start-up exemption?

No, a Singapore branch is not eligible for start-up exemption. It may however still enjoy a partial tax exemption on its chargeable income.

What is the minimum amount of paid-up capital?

The minimum amount of paid-up capital in Singapore is $0.