Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners – Are you pursuing your import/export business dream in Singapore? Maybe you are a foreigner in Singapore and looking to start your export business there? Would you like some great import/export business ideas to start in Singapore? Or do you want to know where to start with very little capital?

Import-export business in Singapore, there are many opportunities, the important thing is to focus on the right areas and potential sectors and plan your trip well.

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

Before moving on to the article, we want to inform you that we have online import-export courses and a personal business mentorship program to support you in this business. We recommend you check out our programs and enroll in our most popular and free online export-import business course below first.

Singapore: Why It’s The Best Place In Asia To Do Business

Singapore is one of the most open and independent economies in the international market, ranking 14th in exports and 15th in imports, and handles goods worth more than $1 trillion.

The infrastructure system includes seaports, airports, post and telecommunications, roads and other public services. This helps Singapore to have high per capita income, life services and social security.

This means that Singapore is a leading manufacturer and supplier of computer electronic units and semiconductors and petroleum refining, Singapore is a transshipment hub in Asia. Singapore is a unique city-state, similar to Hong Kong. Singapore and Hong Kong are competitors in terms of attracting investment and corporate headquarters.

Indeed, Singapore depends on exports, such as consumer electronics, IT products, pharmaceuticals and the financial services sector.

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In 2018, Singapore imported $16.18 billion in agricultural, forestry and fishery products. The United States is the fifth largest supplier to this market, with an import value of $954 million. Malaysia, France, Indonesia and China are the four main markets for this city-state.

Total imports of consumer-oriented food products exceeded $9.8 million in 2018 and $2 billion of imported fish and seafood.

First, local import companies in Singapore look for products such as: food, processed foods (rice, coffee, cashews, sweets, instant noodles, fish sauce, vegetables); also, textile products (fabrics, clothing accessories, uniforms); also furniture and other objects. All these products can be supplied from neighboring ASEAN countries such as Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia. Singapore belongs to ASEAN.

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

Singapore has implemented an open-door policy. Import preparation processes occur via the Internet, allowing foreign importers to receive import permits within 24 hours.

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All goods consumed in Singapore are subject to GST, the Goods and Services Tax in Singapore. In July 2007, the GST was 7% of the CIF price.

To import/export all goods: To import all goods (including inspected and non-inspected items) into Singapore, you must have an import permit through

To export all goods (including controlled and unregulated items) out of Singapore, you need to have an export license through TradeNet®, you will need to do this when:

In some circumstances, such as import/export of commercial samples of uncontrolled items with a total value not exceeding SGD 400/– on CIF (costs, insurance and freight) price, it is possible to import/export without a license.

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The most efficient way is to pay all taxes, duties and GST to Singapore Customs via GIRO, which allows Singapore Customs to make a deduction directly from your bank account.

In Singapore, businesses often use loans, letters of credit and insurance to cover the financial risks associated with transactions.

Major Exports of Singapore Pharmaceuticals Singapore is one of the few countries in the world to export superdrugs.

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

The United States, Europe and Japan were the largest export destinations for Singapore’s pharmaceutical products. Demand for drug storage has contributed to the increase in Singapore’s exports.

The Right Way To Do Business In Singapore

Specifically, in 2019, Singapore’s pharmaceutical export revenue reached $8.1 billion, while import revenue reached $3.1 billion. It is linked to the Covid-19 pandemic.

In particular, Singapore’s biomedical industry employs more than 24,000 workers, accounting for 20% of the workforce. This sector contributes about a fifth of Singapore’s GDP in 2019.

Singapore is a leading manufacturer of hard drives and semiconductors for electronic computers. As a result, Singapore and other heavily export-dependent Asian economies have seen a surge since 2017 on the back of improving global demand, particularly for electronic products and components such as semiconductors. In this category, Singapore competes with Taiwan and China.

Singapore is an exporter of finished products (coffee, tea, coke products, spices, beverages, fish, seafood and tobacco products). The tobacco and food beverage manufacturing industry reached $9 billion in 2017, of which more than 50% was re-exported.

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Singapore imports meat and poultry from all over the world. Poultry and pork products are widely consumed here.

For example, chicken meat is supplied through the import of frozen chicken (whole and partially) from Brazil, the United States, China and Europe.

The main suppliers of tropical fruit in Singapore are the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, China, South Africa, Argentina and Chile, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam.

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

Singaporean families prefer green tea leaves from China, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the United States mainly imported vegetables.

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As for seafood, Singapore imported them from Malaysia, Indonesia, China and Vietnam. Some other suppliers are Norway, Thailand, Japan, Australia and India. In 2018, Singapore’s total seafood imports were $1.8 billion.

The value of wooden furniture imports from Singapore in the first four months of 2019 reached $80.1 million. Singapore imports wooden furniture mainly from Malaysia and China, with the value of imports from these two markets accounting for 71.1% in the first four months of 2019. Vietnam is also increasing its market share with furniture.

Singapore is a small country with no natural resources, so it depends heavily on imports. Singapore has implemented the open door policy, so exporting to Singapore is very easy.

In order to export to Singapore, products are subject to strict quality controls and technical standards. Singapore has strict rules with heavy fines for violators.

Doing Business Effectively In Singapore

A Singapore-based business partner must be an importer or distributor. These import companies will have to carry out all import procedures such as customs declaration. It is convenient because you can declare the forms online and this importer is already registered.

4. Contact information of the person who will be notified once the @Tradenet license registered with the UEN Company Identification Number is approved.

To check the attributes of goods in Singapore, businesses can check the HS code (Harmonized System code) or contact Singapore Customs to receive the code costs around SGD 75 per product (note: this eight-figure HS code check figures will only have political updates valid in Singapore )

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

You must have an interbank GIRO account with Singapore Customs to pay taxes, GST and other charges.

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Once an IBG account is approved, businesses can submit an electronic request to authorize a reporting agent to deduct the tax due directly from the IBG account.

If the company does not open an IBG account with Singapore Customs, taxes and GST will be deducted from the declared agent’s account.

Businesses must carry out payment guarantee transactions (bank/financial guarantee, insurance guarantee) for transactions relating to taxable goods, temporarily imported goods or payment transactions. Charges for the use of service areas authorized by customs (tax suspended area, customs warehouse).

• Apply for an import license for your business or your clients (if the applicant is a declaration agent).

Starting A Business In Singapore

With goods imported by sea, the company is not required to present the printed copy of the customs permit and supporting documents (supporting documents) to the inspection agents at the entry control posts.

For goods imported in containers by air or road, the enterprise must present the import permit and supporting documents such as (invoice, packing list, air waybill) to the personnel at the verification control point.

In addition, companies must retain commercial documents relating to the purchase, import, sale and export of goods for five years from the date of approval of the customs permit.

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

It obliges companies to keep commercial documents and present them upon request by customs.

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To avoid risks, companies involved in the international sale of goods must enter into an international goods sales and purchase agreement.

The mandatory forms for international contracts for the sale and purchase of goods are the written form or other equivalent forms such as

The laws of the parties will govern other matters. Therefore, understanding and applying the provisions of the Convention is an essential task for businesses entering into international contracts.

The function of resolving disputes (including commercial contract disputes) through the arbitration mechanism falls to the Singapore International Arbitration Center (SIAC), a wholly exclusive organization established under the Singapore Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

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The Center has Arbitration Rules (SIAC Rules) based on the Model Law issued by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and recognized by Singapore law (Singapore International Arbitration Law).

Singapore’s choice of the Singapore International Arbitration Center for the resolution of contractual disputes is voluntary for the parties involved. The Contractual Dispute Resolution Terms specify this.

Singapore doesn’t have pure water, it has to import it from another country like Malaysia. (That’s why in Singapore water costs around 5-6 SGD/bottle, it’s expensive, but people can drink tap water everywhere if you can provide qualified bottled water at a good price it will be a very profitable business)

Doing Business In Singapore For Foreigners

In Singapore, people can have

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