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How to Open a Company in Singapore: A Comprehensive Guide

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Singapore is renowned for its pro-business environment, strategic location, and competitive economy, making it a top destination for entrepreneurs globally. Opening a company in Singapore is straightforward thanks to its transparent regulatory environment and efficient business infrastructure. This guide outlines the essential steps to establish a company in Singapore, ensuring a smooth and compliant setup process.

Step 1: Choose the Right Business Structure

Singapore offers various business structures, but the private limited company is the most common and preferred due to its scalability, limited liability to shareholders, and corporate tax benefits. Other options include sole proprietorships and partnerships, each suitable for different business needs and sizes.

Step 2: Select a Company Name

Your company name must be approved by the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) in Singapore before registration. The name should be unique, desirable, and not similar to any existing local company names. It should also not infringe on any trademarks.

Step 3: Prepare Company Registration Documents

To register your company in Singapore, you need the following key documents:

  • Company Constitution: A document that outlines the company’s rules and regulations.
  • Consent to Act as a Director: Each director must provide written consent to hold the position.
  • Consent to Act as a Company Secretary: The appointed company secretary must also provide consent.

Step 4: Register Your Company

Company registration in Singapore is done through ACRA’s online portal, BizFile+. You will need to log in, fill out the application, and submit the necessary documents. The process is highly efficient, often completed within hours if there are no complications.

Step 5: Open a Corporate Bank Account

Once your company is registered, you can open a corporate bank account in one of Singapore’s reputable banks. Most banks require the company principals to be present for account opening. Prepare to provide detailed documentation about your business, such as the business profile, the nature of your business, and projected turnover.

Step 6: Obtain Necessary Business Licenses and Permits

Your business may require specific licenses and permits, depending on its nature. For example, businesses in sectors like food and beverage, education, and travel need to apply for respective licenses from the relevant regulatory bodies in Singapore.

Step 7: Register for Goods and Services Tax (GST)

If your company’s annual turnover exceeds SGD 1 million, you must register for GST, which is similar to VAT in other countries. Once registered, you will need to charge this tax (currently at 7%) on your goods and services and remit this amount to the tax authorities.

Step 8: Stay Compliant with Annual Requirements

Singaporean companies must comply with several annual filing requirements, including filing annual returns and tax returns. Maintaining accurate financial records and engaging a company secretary can help manage these obligations effectively.


Opening a company in Singapore can provide entrepreneurs with a gateway to Asia and access to a dynamic and supportive business environment. The process is streamlined and can be completed quickly with proper preparation and understanding of the local legal and business landscape. Whether you’re a seasoned entrepreneur or a new business owner, setting up a company in Singapore is a strategic and potentially profitable endeavor.