Singapore branch office registration is a process of setting up a foreign company to have a business presence in Singapore.
Before any business can operate on a continuous basis in Singapore with the intention of making a profit, there is the requirement to register with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) of Singapore.
An international business must become a registered entity in Singapore before being in a position to start running its full-time business activities.
The name given to the branch office in Singapore must relate to the official parent company.
A branch office must appoint one or more authorised representatives who are normally a resident in Singapore.
For instance, this would apply to a Singapore citizen, a foreigner with an employment pass, or a permanent resident, and aged 18 years and above.
It is possible for the foreign company to relocate staff to the Singapore office and apply for an employment pass once the registration process is complete.
The function of the branch office must be run as specified in the Memorandum and Articles of Association (M&A) that relates to the parent company.
It is acceptable to follow the original M&A without needing to supply a separate copy for the branch office registration.
Any branch set up in Singapore must have a registered office location.
As stated in the Singapore Companies Act, it is a requirement for the branch office to fully declare its place of incorporation and name on business-related correspondence.
In the process of registering a Singapore branch, a company must use the services of a local professional service, such as a company secretarial service firm, accounting firm or law firm.
a. Certificate of Incorporation of the foreign company (certified copy is accepted)
b. Memorandum and Articles of Association (M&A) of the parent company (certified copy is accepted)
c. List of the directors of the foreign company
d. A memo published by the parent company that states the agents that intend to staff the Singapore office
e. A memo published by the parent company that outlines the authority granted to the Singapore office
f. The registered branch office address
Any documents submitted must be in the English language or duly translated before submitting.
The law firm or other that is hired to undertake the process will take on responsibility for all formalities. It is not a requirement for the executives of the parent company to visit Singapore in person.
The incorporation is completed in two stages that includes the approval of the name (must correspond to the parent company) and the registration of the entity.
Once the required documents are submitted and duly signed by the appropriate authorities, the process of setting up the Singapore branch office can be completed in one or two days.
Once the registration process is finalised, the foreign company is required to open a bank account with a local branch in Singapore.
At this stage, the bank may require that the agents, directors, or owners of the company are in attendance.
The non-resident tax regime is used to tax the Singapore branch office.
It is not possible to apply release schemes or tax incentives that are usually intended for the resident companies.
The branch office must file an annual tax return which should take place within seven months from the end of the financial year.