Benefits of incorporation in offshore zones

Benefits of incorporation in offshore zones

Offshore zones such as the British Virgin Islands or the Cayman Islands are business magnets, and they are drawing business people from all over the world. What is leading to this phenomenon? Here are some perks when you incorporate a company in one of these offshore jurisdictions.

1. Low or zero taxes

One of the most important and popular reasons to transfer your assets to offshore zones, whether its personal finances or corporate merits of the company, is that there are no taxes. Offshore zones are called low tax jurisdictions. This allows you to optimize costs and reduce the tax burden.

2. High level of privacy in offshore companies

Confidentiality, a significant reason global companies and wealthy people choose to incorporate in offshore zones, it implies asset protection and privacy. There is no requirement to disclose the register of directors and shareholders, so a certain degree of protection of personal data, transaction information, etc. can be achieved.

3. The speed of companies’ registration offshore

Depending on the offshore zone, the time required to register a new company can be reduced by up to one day. This means that you can start working within a short time. Also, you dont need to provide a lot of documents to register a company.

4. The ability to open a bank account in any country

By setting up an offshore company, you are not required to create a bank account in that offshore zone. Your bank account can be in any countries of the world, and you can accept payments in a currency convenient for you.

5. No filing requirements

A reason why a business may encounter a problem is with its bookkeeping. Offshore jurisdictions request a simplified form for submitting financial statements, or it does not need to be submitted at all. The main requirement to keep your company running is to pay the annual renewal fee on time and keep the accountings in a place known to the registrar. This makes offshore zones perfect for those who incorporate their business there.

Check our offshore services available here


How to become a Singapore Permanent Resident

How to become a Singapore Permanent Resident?

Singapore is a vibrant and multicultural megapolis that attracts people from all over the world. As they come and witness the life in Lion City, some decide to stay here forever. Of course, there are legal procedures for that. One of them is getting a Permanent Resident (PR) status. 

Singapore PR status allows you to:

  • Eventually, apply for a citizenship and enjoy the same rights as locally-born Singaporeans;
  • Enter and leave the country without applying for visas;
  • Change jobs freely without reapplying for work permits;
  • Sponsor your immediate family members (spouse and unmarried children under 21) for PR application;
  • Apply for long-term visit passes for your parents;
  • Enjoy subsidised fees for enrolling your children to governmental preschools and schools;
  • Reap the financial and tax benefits provided by the government.

How to obtain a Singapore PR status? (link to this service on ACRABIZ website) 

According to the Immigration and Checkpoint Authority (ICA), you are eligible to apply for permanent residence if you are a/an:

  • Spouse of a Singapore citizen or Singapore permanent resident;
  • Unmarried child aged below 21 born within the context of legal marriage to, or have been legally adopted by, a Singapore citizen or Singapore permanent resident;
  • Aged parent of a Singapore citizen;
  • Holder of an Employment Pass (EP), Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass) or S Pass;
  • Student studying in Singapore;
  • Foreign investor in Singapore.

ACRABIZ can make you closer to obtaining PR with our EP application service or Global Investor Programme support package.  

Getting a PR status for EP and EntrePass holders

Permanent Residence application for individuals holding Employment or Entrepreneur Pass is the most commonly used PR scheme. 

The question you properly have in your mind is «when can I apply for my Singapore PR after obtaining the work pass»? In theory, you can apply the day you start working in Singapore as a work pass holder. Although, you’d have to attach the six months’ payslip from your local employee. Therefore, to apply, you need to work in the country at least for six months.

Except for the six months’ payslip, you need to provide following documents: your passport, EP cards, birth certificate, educational certificates, testimonials from previous employees, as well as a letter from a current employee, stating the date of employment, the position held, salary per month for the past six months with a breakdown into basic, overtime and allowance per month. If you are married and have children, you are also required to attach all certificates and documents for your spouse and kids. EntrePass holders need to add a valid business registration certificate and occupational license pertaining to your employment.

Multiple factors can affect the outcome of a PR application, such as your education and professional background, the duration of stay in Singapore, financial status, charitable contributions to society, legal record. 

After collecting necessary documents and filling the form on the ICA website comes the most nervous part, which is waiting for an outcome. Try to sit back and relax. The result usually arrives within 6 to 12 months.

Getting a PR status through a Global Investment Programme (link to this service on ACRABIZ website)

To attract foreign investors to the island Singapore government introduced the Global Investor Programme (GIP). It allows you to get Singapore PR status through an investment to one of the GIP approved business sectors. 

The eligibility criteria for GIP applicants is as follows:

  1. You must invest a minimum amount of S$2.5 million either directly in a Singapore company, in a GIP fund that invests in Singapore companies or a Singapore-based single-family office having Assets-Under-Management (AUM) of at least S$200 million (Option A, B and C explained below).
  2. You must possess at least three years of entrepreneurial and business track record; 
  3. You should currently be running a company with an annual turnover of at least S$200 million in the year immediately preceding your application, and at least S$200 million per annum on average for the three years immediately preceding your application; 
  4. If your company is privately-held, you should have at least 30% shareholding in the company;
  5. Your company must be engaged in one or more of the industries approved under GIP (listed below).

Singapore Economic Development Boards (EDB) defines the following investment options:

Option A: Invest at least S$2.5 million in a new business start-up or expansion of an existing business operation. 

You are required to submit a detailed 5-year business or investment plan with projected employment, expenditure and financial projections that will incur in the company. It will be assessed based on its feasibility, your role in growing the company, the business activities and providing workplaces for locals;

Option B: Invest at least S$2.5 million in a GIP-approved fund that invests in Singapore-based companies. 

You will be assessed based on future business or investment plans in Singapore. It includes specific details on proposed business activities, amount of investment, creation of local jobs.

Option C: Invest 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. 

You must submit a detailed 5-year business plan with projected employment and annual financial projections. The business plan will be assessed based on your role in your single-family office, the functions of your family office, your proposed investment sectors, asset types and geographical focus. 

GIP approved industries:

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Alternative Energy/ Clean Technology 
  • Automotive 
  • Chemicals 
  • Consumer Business (e.g. flavours and fragrances, food ingredients, nutrition, home and personal care) 
  • Electronics 
  • Energy 
  • Engineering Services 
  • Healthcare 
  • Infocomm Products & Services 
  • Logistics & Supply Chain Management 
  • Marine & Offshore Engineering 
  • Media & Entertainment 
  • Medical Technology 
  • Nanotechnology 
  • Natural Resources (e.g. metals, mining, agri-commodities) 
  • Safety & Security 
  • Space 
  • Shipping 
  • Pharmaceuticals & Biotechnology 
  • Precision Engineering 
  • Professional Services, e.g. consulting, design. 
  • Arts Businesses: visual arts businesses, e.g. auction houses, art logistics/storage and performing arts businesses 
  • Sports Businesses 
  • Family Office & Financial Services 

It will take approximately 9-12 months for a GIP Application to be processed. After the approval of your investment project, you should formalise PR status within 12 months.

Applying for Singapore PR status is a serious decision in your life which makes you one step closer to obtaining one of the world’s strongest citizenships. It also gives you and your family access to better opportunities and social policy standards.


Advantages of doing business in Singapore

What are the advantages of doing business in Singapore?

For years Singapore is attracting foreign investors and business people from all over the world. Almost all international giants, such as Facebook and Amazon, also have representations in Singapore. What makes the tiny island so attractive?

Singapore is one of Four Asian Tigers: Asian countries that underwent rapid industrialization and maintained an exceptionally high growth rate. The state consistently holds top rankings in international surveys:

Ranked 1st for Business Environment in the World 2019 by Economist Intelligence Unit

Ranked 1st for World’s most Competitive Economies in 2019 by the World Economic Forum

Ranked 1st in Asia and 8th in the world for Global Innovation Index 2019

Ranked 1st in Asia in the Rule of Law Index 2020, a World Justice Project

Ranked 1st in Asia for quality of living in Mercer’s Quality of Living City Ranking 2019

Ranked 2nd on a World Bank ranking for the ease of doing business reported on The World Bank, Measure Business Regulations 2019

Why should you consider doing business in Singapore? 

Boosting economy

Singapore has a well-developed free market economy. The key sectors are manufacturing, trade and financial services. The nominal GPD per capita is almost US$65.000, which puts Singapore within the top 10 countries of the planet.

According to Globalization and World Cities Research Singapore has an Alpha ++ rating, which means it’s highly integrated with the global economy. The country has no external public debt and a growing current account surplus. Singapore has been active in overseas investments.

Tax policy

Singapore has one of the world’s simplest and most attractive tax system. Singapore does not impose any controlled foreign company rules, tax on capital gains or inheritance tax, and it has one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the world. Currently, the corporate tax rate is 17%. Expectedly, after various governmental reliefs, incentives and schemes, it would be even lower than that.

Newly incorporated firms can receive tax breaks in their first three years, reducing their tax rate to 0% for the first S$100,000 income.

Singapore government also took care of avoiding double taxation for you. Here is the active list of existing international agreements on the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore.

Why Singapore is considered tax heaven?

Fast incorporation process

Singapore is well-known for providing digital governmental services to make incorporation efficient and bureaucracy-free.

Singapore allows 100% company ownership for foreigners. You don’t need any local partners or shareholders. There are also no restrictions on foreign currency movements. 

And It usually takes less than a day to incorporate the company. Link to our Incorporation service.

Strategic location

Singapore is the logistics hub of Asia. It’s located in the centre of Southeast Asia, making it easy to reach any countries in the region. A flight to some of the world’s most important economies like China, India, Australia, would take a couple of hours. You would need to head to Singapore Changi Airport, which is rated as the World’s Best Airport for eight consecutive years. Changi is also one of the busiest airports in the world, in 2019 in catered nearly 70 million passengers. Port of Singapore is the third busiest port in the world by cargo tonnage.

Intellectual property protection

Singapore is ranked as a number one country in Asia in terms of Intellectual Property protection,

Efficient government

Singapore has one the most stable political environments in Asia, as well as the lowest level of corruption, transparent and effective government. The country provides competitive salary packages to civil servants to eradicate the temptation for corruption. The punishments for such offence are also very harsh, which makes it quite unappealing.

The strict law enforcement also makes Singapore one of the safest countries in the world.

Quality of living

Singapore qualifies number one for quality of living in Asia. Anyone who comes to the Lion City will be stunned by the well-developed infrastructure. This includes the airport, highways, public transport system, commercial buildings, city attractions, public parks, hotels, museums, malls, amusement parks.

You would also face a vibrant international-friendly community. Language barrier? Do not worry, almost everyone can converse in English here. English is the most common home language in Singapore.

Singapore’s education system is also internationally recognised. National University of Singapore (NUS) is consistently ranked within the best universities of the world. Bloomberg ranked Singapore’s healthcare system the most efficient in the world.

Overall, Singapore is a well-established country that provides a business-friendly environment for new foreign entrepreneurs.