What do I Need to Open a Company Bank Account in Singapore?
Singapore, as a state, was formed relatively recently. Due to the need for large-scale investments, the country’s authorities decided to provide banking services to clients worldwide. Singaporean banks have an extremely high level of confidentiality, security of funds, and quality of services to achieve world-class competitiveness. Over time, the banking sector has developed so much in this country that it is characterized as one of the most stable economic and banking systems.
The demand for corporate banking and corporate bank accounts in Singapore is growing every year. And this popularity is due to the sharp increase in the flow of capital from the West to Singapore. It is a genuinely reputable jurisdiction with a regulated and secure banking system, thanks to which all banking operations provide reliable and long-term solutions for any business type.
Opening a corporate bank account in Singapore for non-residents is not an easy task. It is required to use enough time and effort to prepare all papers for registration. Experienced lawyers will help you quickly go through the procedure for obtaining an invoice with minimal customer involvement in the process.
Banking and corporate sector in Singapore
The Central Bank of Singapore strengthened its monetary policy and was selected as the best central bank in 2019.
There are three main banking services in Singapore:
- Individuals’ current accounts
- Corporate accounts for banks
- Savings and wealth management accounts, including private and priority banking
The first option is reserved for Singapore citizens, while the second and third are also available to foreigners. Priority banking services are primarily targeted at high net worth individuals who invest large amounts of money. In exchange for the capital flow they provide to banks, they receive special interest rates, lower foreign exchange rates, and better credit conditions.
Singapore is an excellent banking option, especially for those looking to expand their business in Asia. However, opening an account as a foreigner can be difficult. It requires a client’s presence in the country and many other requirements regarding the minimum deposit and account balance. Singapore is well worth it as it offers one of the best offshore accounts in the world.
Benefits of the Singapore Banking Industry
As one of the world’s leading financial centers, Singapore offers world-class banking and related financial services to corporate clients.
The country has strict security laws about the banking sector, including disclosing information about the existence of accounts and their owners. Here are some important facts about banking in Singapore:
- The banking industry is fully integrated into the global financial system. It operates without any government-imposed financial control over the movement of funds, which means that having and opening a corporate bank account in Singapore will provide fast and cheap solutions for sending and receiving payments to any point of the world.
- Tariff policy and minimum balance requirements vary from bank to bank, but fees are competitive and fair in general.
- Most banks in Singapore offer multi-currency accounts, thanks to which you can store money and make banking transactions in the currency that is preferable for you.
How to open a corporate bank account?
Registration of a company abroad is an opportunity to expand the horizons of its activity and diversify its financial structure from the unfavorable economic climate of a particular country. Moreover, by opening a corporate bank account in Singapore, the client receives tax privileges and protection by operating in a modern and politically stable jurisdiction.
The banking system of Singapore is renowned globally for its lack of corruption and an economic environment conducive to investment. A feature of the Singapore offshore banking system is the absence of taxes on profits received from abroad. Also, deposits held in financial institutions of this country are not taxed.
By becoming a Bank of Singapore client, you will have access to a full range of financial services, including retail, corporate, trading, treasury, exchange, insurance, investment services, and asset management assistance.
In addition, the bank in Singapore is actively targeting the small and medium-sized business market and has very attractive financial products specifically for this segment.
You can open a multi-currency business account, which is ideal for international business. The financial instrument supports 13 currencies USD, EUR, AUD, JPY, GBP, CNH, HKD, CAD, NZD, CHF, SEK, DKK, NOK.
After opening a corporate bank account in Singapore, its owner is provided with access to modern internet banking, access to the Cash-flow service, and ordering business cards.
Benefits of opening a corporate bank account in Singapore
- The low percentage of taxes for doing business.
- The ability to do business with any currency.
- No corporate tax payment for three years after registration.
- High level of asset security.
- No restrictions on the amount of withdrawal and input of assets.
- The loyal taxation system for international business.
- Safe execution of trading operations.
- The ability to manage your wallet remotely by calling a financial institution or using Internet banking.
- No installment capital payments.
- Storage of documents is allowed outside the state.
Open an account in Singapore to diversify
How to open a corporate bank account? Opening an account in Singapore is easier than opening an account in Hong Kong. Opening an account in Singapore is a good risk diversification strategy given that the country is a banking and financial fortress immune to any crisis. It is profitable to work with a bank in Singapore. Singapore offshore banks are elite, sophisticated, modern, and highly reliable. They also have no control over capital inflows and outflows, and most importantly, they have no intermediary banks.
Usually, to open an account, you need to travel to Singapore. But if you have the required minimum capital, the opening takes place entirely remotely without any problems. All you need is a minimum of €500,000 or USD, a valid passport, an invoice in your first and last name, and that’s it.
Bank of Singapore due diligence process
The Singapore banking system’s main reason for working so smoothly is the thorough due diligence on potential clients. This approach guarantees the establishment of business relationships with reliable and honest companies.
In addition, Singapore has implemented a regulatory framework and strategy to comply with anti-money laundering and terrorist financing guidelines and rules. This implementation means that every Singaporean bank must conduct a detailed KYC assessment to new applicants before accepting them as its clients and opening a corporate bank account in Singapore.
This strategy is not a discretionary step; it is a prescribed and mandatory procedure established by the international banking regulations and Singapore banks. The customer due diligence process includes verifying the identity of all key individuals in the company, the source of funds, and an understanding of the underlying business.
Also, the main participants of the company are additionally checked for their belonging to the PEP.
Features of registration of corporate bank account Singapore
What do I need to open a company bank account? Obtaining an account at any international bank in Singapore comes with specific requirements. They are intended to confirm the financial soundness of the firm and its executives. Unlike registration with credit institutions located in other offshore zones, the following account requirements apply to opening an account in Singapore:
- The company’s head can only be a person holding this position for no more than three years.
- The founder of the company must have a personal secretary on staff. Moreover, they must be a resident without fail.
- The number of shareholders is limited to 50 people.
- It should be company policy that it is impossible to transfer assets to a third party without shareholder approval.
- The company’s articles of association must include a clause requiring the removal of a manager or secretary in the event of any three penalties in Singapore.
- A report must be submitted on financial activities once a year.
- If the company’s activities are related to the banking, financial, or insurance sector, it is necessary to pay the authorized capital.
Income tax is payable only for the first three years after receiving the bank account.
Tax breaks apply not only to new companies but also to existing ones. According to the current legislation, firms whose activities have existed for several years can only pay up to 50% of tax fees. The complete absence of taxes is possible only if the company has profited from activities outside of Singapore. At the same time, taxes are paid only if the assets are transferred to a Singapore bank.
Corporate bank account requirements and documents for its opening
How to open a corporate bank account? To complete the remote procedure for opening a corporate account for your company, you will need to provide:
- Registration certificate
- Memorandum and Articles of Association (M&A)
- Certificate of Incumbency (list of current company officials, not older than one year)
If the company belongs to a trading or investment company, then here are additional corporate bank account requirements that will need to be provided:
- Trade company documents invoices, list of suppliers/customers, contractual agreements
- Documents for an investment holding company confirmation of investments (agreement on the ownership of shares or documents confirming the legal status of ownership of them), director’s resume, personal bank statement for three months on behalf of the director or beneficiary
- Director’s resume
- Copies of passports of signatories and directors
- A document confirming the addresses of signatories and directors (telephone bill, bank statement in another bank, letter from a government agency) not older than three months
Singapore banks rating
- OCBC is one of the most renowned banks in the world. The minimum balance for non-residents is at least $30,000, for companies registered in Singapore $5,000.
- DBS Bank has more than two hundred representative offices around the world. You must meet in person with a representative or call them by phone to open an account. The minimum amount of deposits is 50 thousand US dollars.
- UOB, UNITED OVERSEAS BANK LIMITED is an extremely low-cost way of opening an account with minimum balance requirements of just USD 1,000.
- STANDARD CHARTERED BANK is the most popular financial institution for opening an offshore account in Singapore. A deposit of $35,000 is required to register. It is worth noting that a fee is charged for storing funds less than USD 35,000.
- BANK OF SINGAPORE offers to open an investment account. The balance on the balance sheet must not be less than USD 2 million.
Which bank is best for company account Singapore?
OCBC Bank is the oldest bank in Singapore. OCBC Bank offers a wide range of financial services and wealth management, including corporate, investment, private banking, insurance, and securities trading.
United Overseas Bank offers a wide range of financial services, including personal financial services, private banking, commercial and corporate banking, investment financial services, insurance, capital markets, treasury services, brokerage, asset management, and venture capital management.