Overview of company structures

If a foreign company does not want to redomicile in Singapore, what are their options and what do they entail?


  • They can set up a representative office, branch office or subsidiary company

    The table below presents a quick snapshot of the main differences between the three business entities:

      REPRESENTATIVE OFFICE BRANCH OFFICE SUBSIDIARY COMPANY
    Ownership Intended as a temporary set-up by the foreign company. 100% owned by the foreign company Treated as an extension of the foreign company. 100% owned by the foreign company 100% can be wholly owned by a foreign company
    Business Operations Not allowed to engage in any commercial revenue-generating activities Can conduct business activities that fall within the scope of its parent company Can conduct business activities
    Revenue N.A. Can repatriate 100% of its earnings Can repatriate 100% of its earnings
    Employees Limited to five employees No restrictions No restrictions
    Statutory Requirements

    Appointment of Chief Representative from main head office to relocate to Singapore

    Sales turnover of a foreign company must exceed US$250,000

    Documentary proof that the foreign company has been established for more than three years

    Registered office address in Singapore

    Appoint one agent who is an ordinarily resident in Singapore

     

    Registered office address in Singapore

    Appoint at least one director who is ordinarily resident in Singapore

    Appoint a company secretary

    Annual Compliance Requirements

    Annual renewal of registration

    Mandatory to upgrade to a Branch Office or Subsidiary Company after three years.

    Submission of audited accounts of the head office

    Submission of audited accounts

    Filing of tax returns

    Submission of audited accounts

    Filing of Annual Returns

    Source: Rivkin