Singapore Company Registration for Foreign Businessmen: What is the Most Ideal Formation?Foreign companies that want to have a business presence in Singapore can register a subsidiary company, branch office, or representative office. But since each of these entities has its own specific purposes and advantages, it is important for entrepreneurs and businessmen to determine why they want to setup a Singapore company.
According to business registration firm Rikvin, foreign companies that want to explore the business and market viability of Singapore are generally recommended to register a representative office which is allowed to conduct market research.
In addition, this arrangement is also permitted to oversee the local distributors and agents of its parent company, engage in customer services excluding those involving technical and repair inquiries, and engage in negotiation on behalf of its main office.
But since a representative office is not treated as a legal business entity per se, it is prohibited to engage in any profit-yielding activities, enter a contract, lease a warehouse, and other commercial activities, Rikvin added.
Rikvin, which caters to the needs of foreign companies planning to form a Singapore company, also said that a representative office should renew its permit annually for a maximum of three years if it wants to continue its local presence.
After this three-year limit, foreign companies should shift to a legal business entity, such as a subsidiary company or branch office, if they want to engage in a full-blown operation.
A subsidiary company and branch office are both allowed to engage in any business activities as long as these are also performed by their parent companies. However, there are glaring differences between these two business entities.
For example, a subsidiary company is treated as a separate legal entity from its parent company which means that it is directly responsible for its own activities, losses, and liabilities. On the other hand, a branch office is an extension of its parent company in which the latter is legally liable for the Singapore branch.
Another difference is the taxation system for these two legal entities. A subsidiary company, being a business incorporated in Singapore, enjoys the same tax benefits and exemptions provided to local businesses. This is not the case for a branch office which is treated as a non-resident company.
When it comes to government-required disclosures, a subsidiary company is more appealing for most foreign businessmen since they are not obligated to submit the audited accounts of their main office unlike in a branch office.
Rikvin is the leading Singapore Company Registration Specialist and has successfully helped thousands of foreign entrepreneur start a Singapore Company. The firm provides a complete corporate solution under one roof for Singapore subsidiary registration of private limited companies with the opening of corporate accounts, business registration including accounting, tax, immigration related to work passes visa and compliance services in Singapore.
Rikvin PTE LTD
20 Cecil Street, #14-01, Equity Plaza, Singapore 049705
Main Lines : (65) 6438 8887
Fax : (65) 6438 2436
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