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Running a business

Maintaining a business in Singapore is a fairly simple affair. With its strong governance, Singapore registered businesses are required to comply and keep their business dealings in check and comply accordingly. Different structures require different sets of compliance and are governed by different regulations and Legal Acts.

 

Sole Proprietorships have the simplest form of compliance, and on the other end of the spectrum would be the Private Limited Companies. However it is not all that complex to keep your house in order and to abide by the timeline for reporting.

 

In general, there are 2 regulating Authorities that businesses have to report to, The Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) and The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS). One looks after corporate governance and the other tax matters. The annual obligations are set out below, predominantly for Private Limited Companies.

 

Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)

ACRA is the national regulator of business entities in Singapore. For Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships, annual renewals are all that is required, apart from of course maintaining documents for statutory periods and keeping proper accounts. For Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs), an annual declaration of solvency by its managers. The most arduous of the lot will be for Private Limited Companies (Pte Ltd). Pte Ltd Companies are required to table its accounts and Directors’ report at its Annual General Meeting of members (AGM) six months from its financial year end close, and file its Annual Returns 1 month after its AGM.

Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS)

IRAS is the tax administrator to the Government of Singapore. All business entities are required to report its income to the Authority. Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships are to report mid April of every year and for Pte Ltd Companies, all final tax filings are to be submitted by the end of November. In addition, for Pte Ltd Companies, an Estimated Chargeable Tax (ECI) is required to be submitted within 3 months from its financial year end.