Business Relocation To Singapore | Eligibility & Schemes

Overview of Business Relocation to Singapore

If you are looking for a one-stop solution to incorporate or expand your business to Singapore, look no further. Regardless if you are a seasoned business professional or a budding entrepreneur, IASG is at a position to best advice you on the various options available.

Setting up a business, especially if you are a non-Singaporean, requires that you be familiar with the policies and systems in place. As such, it may be worthwhile to engage the services of a professional firm that has the relevant track record and expertise. After business incorporation, it is also critical that you continue to receive best in class immigration advisory. This ensures that your business complies with local immigration laws and policies and you are well positioned to operate optimally.

With its pro-business environment and laws, Singapore has established itself as a hotbed for innovation and entrepreneurship, attracting organizations both small and large as the choice destination to relocate. In 2020, with Covid-19 globally impacting the world, it was widely reported how Singapore has yet again proven its efficiency with its deliberate decision making in handling matters.

Most recently in June 2020, Singapore has retained the top spot as the World’s most competitive economy in the latest edition of the Institute for Management Development’s (IMD) World Competitiveness Ranking. This comes amid the flurry of uncertainties plaguing businesses and whole economies globally, due to Covid-19.

Regardless whether you are a corporate or individual investor, as one of the world’s easiest places to do business, setting up in Singapore can be seamless and efficient when you work with the right partners.

Singapore Continues to be an Ideal Location for Business

Singapore has what it takes for your business to thrive. In June 2020, Singapore has retained the top spot as the World’s most competitive economy in the latest edition of the Institute for Management Development’s (IMD) World Competitiveness Ranking. The Global Competitiveness Report evaluates an annual list of 63 economies, which analyses their ability to generate prosperity. Making up the top five after Singapore were Denmark, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Hong Kong – which economists duly noted as illustrating the ‘strength and resilience of many small economies’, rather than a single major player in dealing with Covid-19.

As a gateway to ASEAN and Asia, many companies have settled on Singapore not only for their expansion, but also for their operational headquarters.  This can be attributed to Singapore’s attractiveness for:

  • Business-friendly environment
  • Having a stable government and political climate
  • Supportive government policies (Taxation, Laws and Intellectual Property rights etc)
  • Diverse talent pool with the right expertise
  • Access to fast growing markets in the region
  • State of the art infrastructure and connectivity
  • Good quality of life

In a series of national ministerial broadcasts on Singapore’s post-COVID-19 future, Singapore Prime Minister Mr Lee Hsien Loong reaffirmed how “Singapore is well placed to connect to the new channels and flows”.  Further, he added that the Singapore government will be “Digitising both private and public sectors, building R&D and innovation capabilities”. They will be committed to “Retain and Attract talent, and making investments to contribute to the economy”.

In a ChannelNewsAsia article published 30 May 2020,  the Economic Development Board of Singapore (EDB) reported in the first four months of 2020, Singapore have secured about S$13 billion in investment commitments for the “next few years”, Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing said. Despite the perils of Covid-19, Singapore has exceeded the S$8 billion to S$10 billion which had been projected for the whole of 2020.

This echoes Mr Lee’s calm reassurance that, “When other countries are closing their doors, we are keeping ours open*“.

*Sources –

How Does IASG Help?

IASG will front the entire business registration process so as to get your business operational in the shortest possible time. This includes :

  • Conducting an Initial profiling
  • Advisory on local laws and policies necessary for foreigners registering businesses / looking to invest in Singapore
  • Registration of company with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) of Singapore
  • Preparation of all necessary documentation
  • Opening of Corporate Singapore Bank Account
  • Pass Applications (Employment Pass , Personalised Employment Pass (PEP), Dependant’s Pass)

Eligibility and Schemes

Business entities in Singapore are licensed and regulated by the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). There are several types of business structures that can be set up in Singapore.

  • Subsidiary Company:
    A locally incorporated private limited company where the majority shareholder is another local or foreign company.
  • Branch Office:
    A registered legal entity in Singapore that functions as an extension of the foreign parent company.
  • Representative Office:
    A temporary corporate setup that enables foreign companies to operate and explore the market options and efficacy or manage company affairs in Singapore without conducting any profitable business activity.
  • Single-Family Office:
    Conducts various activities to facilitate the day-to-day management of a family’s assets that includes tax filing,  management of the family’s investments and consolidation of the family’s accounts.

On the other end of the spectrum, there are also visa related options available for both individual foreign entrepreneurs and investors who are interested in setting up a long-term base in Singapore.

This can be done through the EntrePass, or under the Global Investor Programme (GIP).

Global Investor Programme (GIP)

The GlP accords PR status to investors with a substantial business track record who intend to drive the growth of their investments from Singapore. To qualify for the GIP, the applicant must either

(a) invest at least S$2.5 million in a new business entity or in the expansion of an existing business operation in Singapore, or

(b) invest at least S$2.5 million in a GIP fund that invests in Singapore-based companies, or

(c) invest at least S$2.5 million in a new or existing Singapore-based single family office having Assets-Under-Management (AUM*) of at least S$200 million.

IASG clients who wishes to pursue Permanent Residence under this scheme can benefit directly from our established and close working relationship with EDB. Our clients will go through an exclusive pre-qualifying process with EDB, before actual applications are filed.

For more information about GIP, click here.


The EntrePass is designed to facilitate the entry and stay of entrepreneurs who intend to start and operate a new business in Singapore. Successful applicants will be awarded a one-year pass. Visit the Ministry of Manpower for more information.

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