Compliance is a key consideration for companies operating in Singapore. Failure to adhere to the high standards for transparency and accountability can result in significant fines and penalties. Companies have to pay particular attention to both corporate governance and intellectual property (IP) rights. Despite the complexity, doing business in Singapore can — with the right support — be a highly worthwhile endeavor.

At a Glance

There’s no local bank account needed.

Yes, local representation is required.

The standard payroll frequency is monthly.

No, local registration isn’t required.

Good to Know

Singapore is a melting pot of different cultures, religions, and ethnicities, including Chinese, Malay, Indian, and Eurasian. This diversity is reflected in the various festivals and celebrations that take place throughout the year, such as Lunar New Year, Deepavali, and Christmas. This dynamic also informs how we conduct business in Singapore.

Singapore is a small city-state with a highly developed economy and a strong focus on international trade. The country is a major financial center and Southeast Asia’s hub for shipping, logistics, and transport. Its strategic location, strong infrastructure, and pro-business environment has attracted many international companies, contributing to its economic success.

Singapore is known for its strict laws and strict enforcement. As a result, the country has gained a reputation as a safe and orderly place to work, live, and visit. Businesses often find comfort in knowing that the ‘rule of law’ always prevails. The penalty for corruption is also excessively high.

*There is a contribution system called Central Provident Funds (CPF) to be paid on a graduated scale depending on the age group by the employer and employee. CPF are a requirement to be paid for Singaporean or Permanent Resident. Employment Pass holders are not required to contribute to CPF. 

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Business Costs

Companies that seek to operate in Singapore should have a solid financial foundation and be prepared for the high costs of doing business. Renting or purchasing commercial property, hiring, and paying for other business expenses aligns with the cost of living, which is among the highest in the world. Outsourcing certain functions can help cut costs.

Intense Competition

Singapore is home to many international companies and local businesses, and competition can be fierce. A strong value proposition and market differentiators are necessary to succeed. With the right support, you can keep abreast of the latest rules and regulations for incorporation, maintenance, payroll, HR, compliance, or bookkeeping.

Complex Regulations

Strict regulations and compliance requirements set the tone for doing business in Singapore. The regulations are particularly complex when it comes to corporate compliance, employment, tax, and health and safety. Compliance is an absolute necessity to avoid potential fines and legal issues.

Next Steps

We can help you navigate the strict regulatory environment in Singapore. Our expert-led managed services and technical consulting were designed to make the complex simple.

Backed by GateWay, our pioneering global expansion management (GXM) system, we bring an unparalleled focus on the customer experience. This platform unifies everything you need for cross-border success in a single place, allowing you to effortlessly and compliantly manage your international footprint.

“While local vendors tend to primarily care about their sliver of the business, HSP Group is, as the single provider, fully invested in the success of the entire organization.” 

Head of Finance and Operations at a fast-growing FinTech

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