6 Reasons Why Singapore is Asia's Most Business Friendly Country Government grants such as SPRING Singapore, Capability Development Grant, Early Stage Venture Funding, Financial Sector Technology and Innovative Scheme among the many others are targeted towards the start-ups and SMEs

By Piyush Bhandari

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Singapore is ranked the tenth hottest start-up ecosystems in the world as per a report from the research firm Compass. The state-city is consistently ranked No. 1 for the ease of doing business, by the World Bank. An affirmation of this being, hundreds of multinational companies including Uber, Toyota, Facebook and Google are headquartered in this city.

If you're looking to expand your business or start operations in the Asia Pacific, here are the 6 reasons why Singapore wins the crown of the leading business-friendly South East Asian hotspot.

#1. Singapore Holding Companies the Best Option

As a vehicle for investment purposes, companies from all over are keen to set up a Singapore holding company for their Asia Pacific business investments. Companies from India are especially keen to do so because of the strong bilateral ties which both Singapore and India share. The relationship was strengthened even further when the Singapore Free Trade Agreement (India - Singapore Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement - CECA) was signed in 2005, which not only helped to enhance the trading volumes between both these countries, but it also helped Singapore boost its traction as a major investment destination.

With its business-friendly environment, world-class infrastructure and one of the best tax frameworks in the world, Singapore is the best place for any investor to enhance their business and their presence in Asia.

#2. Abundant finance at low rates

Singapore is home to over 128 commercial banks, 31 merchant banks, 365 fund managers and 604 capital markets services license holders. As a primary hub for wealth management and investments in entire Asia, it is easy for the businesses to have access to private as well as commercial banking services to fund their expansion at low-interest rates. Various tax incentives, financing schemes and cash grants encourage businesses to set up their entities in the country.

Government grants such as SPRING Singapore, Capability Development Grant, Early Stage Venture Funding, Financial Sector Technology and Innovative Scheme among the many others are targeted towards the start-ups and SMEs.

#3. Efficient Tax Systems

Open and honest tax policies, tax exemptions and financial incentives make Singapore the most sought after destination in the APAC region for companies wanting to penetrate into the Asian market.

Along with the single-tier flat-rate corporate income tax system, the government has signed over 21 free trade agreements with 27 economies and 76 comprehensive avoidance of double tax agreements which facilitates smooth business across borders. These tax incentives have attracted and retained foreign businesses, investors and start-ups to Singapore.

#4. Easy Company Setup Process

Setting up a business in Singapore is simple and straightforward. The country welcomes with open arms investors, entrepreneurs and professionals who can complement the economy.

You can set up a company in five simple steps in a matter of days.

  1. Choose your business entity
  2. Register your company by complying with the minimum setup requirements
  3. Open a corporate bank account in Singapore
  4. Get the necessary permits
  5. Set up an office and hire well-trained and qualified employees

#5. Raising capital and funds

Singapore is one of the most favourable destinations to raise international funding and create regional treasury hubs. Global brands are leveraging the operational convenience to set up an outpost. Investing in Singapore is much easier than in countries such as India where the investor has to undergo high-risk jurisdictions.

#6. A stable government and economy

When governments around the world are envisioning entrepreneurship to create jobs and drive the economy ahead, it's worth taking a look at the growth story adopted by the Singapore government. A stable, transparent and orderly government, with a vision to take the nation to the progressive path has led Singapore to become a business and innovative hub. The political systems are efficient, wherein each law, policy and regulation is framed keeping in mind the rational and pro-business approach.

Additionally, the government has developed a world-class infrastructure with excellent road transport system and communication facilities. Not only does the country operate efficient air and seaports but also offers a good network of the highway system, subways and internet infrastructure.


In the last eight years, Singapore has become an entrepreneur's heartland in Asia. Mindful factors working in favour are the availability of a robust infrastructure, ease of doing business, clear government policies and their technology adoption. The vital elements are encouraging foreign investments, creating more opportunities for foreign players. With a gamut of services including company setup, acquiring various business licenses, conducting the market survey, getting government approvals, facilitating accounting, tax and payroll, we provide a whole range of corporate support services to kick-start and support your business in Singapore.

Piyush Bhandari

Managing Partner, IMC Group

Piyush Bhandari is a qualified Chartered Accountant. He has over 15 years experience in global tax, legal and commercial expansion, mergers and acquisitions and has advised mid to large size corporates globally. The IMC Group caters to the growing needs of the business looking to expand in Singapore. The gamut of corporate services to kickstart and support your business in Singapore include incorporation, acquiring various business licenses, joint ventures, government approvals, facilitating accounting, tax and payroll.   


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