Setting up an offshore company is a great way to expand your business beyond your home country.
There are also other benefits that you get to enjoy – stay with us as we cover them below!
What is an offshore company?
An offshore company is based outside the country where the headquarters are situated.
It is a business entity registered in a jurisdiction other than the one in which it operates. Before you set up your offshore company, you should consider the implications of this difference in the jurisdiction.
What are the benefits of setting up an offshore company in Singapore?
Offshore companies in Singapore enjoy reduced these benefits:
- Tax exemptions for eligible foreign-derived income obtained in Singapore
- Asset protection
- A solid legal system for ease and assurance if an issue arises
So, how do you start an offshore company in Singapore?
Step 1: Prepare the basic details
Before you register your company, you’ll need to decide on the type of company you want to have. These are some types of companies in Singapore:
- Private limited companies
- Sole proprietorships
- Limited liability partnerships
While a private limited company is the most common option, feel free to go with another type if that might be more suited to your business structure.
Next, you’re going to need a name for your company. If you decide to go with the parent company’s name, ensure that there isn’t already another entity in Singapore with the same name.
Search on Singapore’s Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) website to check for other companies that might have already claimed your chosen name.
Once you have your name, you’ll need to go to the Company Registrar to have it approved.
Related Read: Why Company Name Search in Singapore Is Important »
Step 2: Ensure you meet the requirements
Now that you’ve got a name for your company, you’ll need to appoint directors and shareholders.
Remember that you must have at least 1 local Singaporean director who’s no younger than 18 years old, but you can appoint additional directors who are foreigners.
As for shareholders, you can appoint either a local or a foreigner, and this person can also be the director. Unlike directors, a shareholder can be either an individual or a corporate body.
You’ll also need a company secretary. This person must be a local Singaporean, and they cannot be the same person as the director or shareholder.
Next, you’ll need to have paid-up capital paid from your shareholders in exchange for your company stocks or shares. In Singapore, the minimum amount is only S$1.
Lastly, ensure you have a registered address for your company that you can provide on the registration form. P.O. Boxes aren’t allowed, so you’ll need a proper address.
Step 3: Register with ACRA
Before we proceed any further, a crucial piece of information you must know is that foreigners cannot register a company on their own in Singapore.
For this step of the journey, you’ll need to appoint an agent or get in touch with a professional firm to do the work for you.
Be careful in selecting someone and ensure that they are legitimate and experienced in this type of company registration.
The agent will require documents such as your identification papers, passport copies of the directors and shareholders, and proof of their residential addresses.
All of this will be submitted to ACRA, and once your business is registered, you will be given your business license.
Step 4: Register for GST, CPF, and SDL
If the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is applicable to your company, you can register for it on the myTax portal.
GST is mandatory if your business has turned over S$1 million in the last 12 months or is projected to turn over that amount in the next 12 months.
This means that even if you have not started making any money yet, but you believe you will be hitting that target in the coming year, you can register for GST on a prospective basis.
You need to pay both the Skills Development Levy (SDL) and Central Provident Fund (CPF) if your company hires workers in Singapore.
CPF registrations can be done on the CPF website, whereas there are multiple channels you can use to pay the SDL.
Get help to set up your offshore company in Singapore
Setting up your offshore company might seem like a tedious and lengthy process.
However, once you have all your basic details and documents in order, you should be able to register your company smoothly.
If you’re still not confident about doing it yourself, you can get a professional to help you with the offshore incorporation process!
Set up an offshore company in Singapore today!
What does it take to set up an offshore company in Singapore successfully? Let our experts take care of the details for your business expansion needs!