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Setting Up a Representative Office in Singapore

Setting Up a Representative Office in Singapore

Updated on Wednesday 18th May 2016

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Setting-up-a-representative-office-in-SingaporeThe economic development of Singapore has led to an increasing number of foreign companies setting up operations here. Among the types of structures available for registration for foreign entities are branch offices, subsidiaries and representative or liaison offices. The last ones are suitable for companies wanting to have a permanent establishment in Singapore and benefit from the city-state’s double tax agreements. Since 2012 foreign enterprises may register liaison offices for a maximum period of three years after which the status of the company must be changed and registered with the Singapore Trade Register.

Our lawyers in Singapore can provide you with more information about the new legislation on representative offices.

Requirements to set up a liaison office in Singapore

Foreign companies are subject to several conditions in order to be allowed to open representative offices in Singapore. These are:

  • -          the company must be registered for at least three years in its country of origin;
  • -          it must have a minimum sales return of 250,000 US dollars;
  • -          it must have a maximum number of five employees.

It must be noted that the Singapore liaison office is only allowed to carry out activities with a non-commercial purpose, such as:

  • -          marketing and feasibility studies;
  • -          customer support activities;
  • -          act as a contact point between the parent company and business partners in Singapore.

The Singapore representative office must renew its status every year and must bear the name of the parent company.

The video below presents the main steps and requirements to open a liaison office in Singapore:

 

Documents for registering a Singapore representative office

When starting a liaison office in Singapore, the parent company must submit the following the documents:

  • -          a prescribed application form duly completed;
  • -          the parent company’s certificate of incorporation;
  • -          the foreign company’s last annual report and audited accounts;
  • -          a declaration stating to comply with the Terms and Conditions regulating representative offices in Singapore.

The documents must be filed with International Enterprise by a professional or by a law firm in Singapore.

If you need assistance in setting up a liaison office in the city-state, do not hesitate to contact our Singapore lawyers.

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