How to Register a Business in Singapore – The Timelines and Procedures

Company registration in Singapore is a smooth and seamless process. However, this is only the case if you have the necessary documents and follow the established rules.

However, if you are unfamiliar with the company registration process, you can contact a company that offers company formation services in Singapore.

Take a look at the entire process.

Here’s How to Register a Business in Singapore Quickly

1. Company Name Reservation

Prior to the establishment of your company or business, the Singapore government must give you express permission to use your company name. Explicit permission means that you must go through the name reservation and registration process, which is carried out by the company registrar.

How to Register a Business in Singapore

When choosing your company name, make sure that it does not contain the terms legal, financial, media, and bank. These names will delay the name reservation process due to their enormous competition. Keep these tips in mind to get through this step quickly:

  • Your name must be unique and may not be used by any other company.
  • The name must also not conflict with existing trademarks.
  • It should also not be rude, obscene, or dirty.
  • The name should not be reserved yet.

2. Register the Company

After you have received approval from the Registrar of Companies, the process of company registration begins. Often this process takes no more than a few hours. This is the case if all the details are correct.

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Sometimes the process can be delayed for foreigners, but this is a rare occasion. In such a case, however, this only means that the government authorities need more time to analyze your documents. The whole process will cost you S$300.

What Next After Registration?

After your company is registered, the Registrar of Companies will issue several documents, including the Certificate of Incorporation.

This document is sent in the form of an e-mail from the Registrar of Companies. The document confirms your establishment and also contains the registration number of your company.

Keep this document safe, as it is an official document. Although Singapore does not issue paper certificates, you can get one for S$50 and you will have to wait between 3 and 5 days.

Company Business Profile

Once the registration process is complete, the Company Registrar will create a Company Profile. Expect the following in the Company Profile:

  • The company name and its registration number
  • Previous company names, if any
  • Date of incorporation
  • The company’s activities
  • Paid-up capital
  • Registered address
  • Shareholder details
  • Company secretary details
  • Director details

Do not forget the company secretary, because he is an important part of the company. Furthermore, he must be a citizen of Singapore. To get one, you can contact corporate secretarial services.

Once you have received your company profile, you will be legally able to do business in Singapore. This includes opening a bank account, setting up your contacts and renting office space.

How to Apply for a Business License?


When applying for a business license, you must take into account the type of business you operate. Some businesses require special licenses to operate, and these include:

  • Educational institutes
  • Financial services
  • Employment agencies
  • Export & import companies
  • Restaurants
  • Travel agencies

Goods and Service Tax Registration (GST)

If your company’s turnover exceeds S$1 million, you must apply for a GST registration, also known as sales tax or VAT. With this registration, you can charge your customers a 7% surcharge for the services and goods you offer.

But this money does not belong to you but to the authorities of Singapore. On the other hand, if your turnover is less than S$1 million, a GST registration is not required.

Now it is your turn. After you have gone through the entire process listed in this article, you will have a better chance of registering your company in Singapore. The sooner you complete this process, the sooner you can start doing business in Singapore.

Written in collaboration with:

Corporate Services Singapore
65 Chulia Street OCBC Centre,
+65 6602 8286
[email protected]

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