The absence of an offshore regime in Singapore does not limit the business potential of a Singapore company. Singapore offshore companies are classified as either resident or non-resident companies depending on whether they are managed in Singapore or a foreign country, thus allowing a Singapore offshore company to be based in or outside Singapore with operations outside Singapore.

A non-resident Singapore offshore company is comparable to an International Business Company or IBC, which in an offshore tax haven is exempt from all local taxation, permitted to trade globally and restricted from being owned by local residents; the differences being that a Singapore offshore company is allowed to operate locally providing that the necessary tax obligations are met for income earned in Singapore and ownership is not restricted from local residents.

Not being subject to tax on global income allows Singapore offshore companies to secure profits in a tax free environment. To decrease the possibility of any liability to tax on income remitted to Singapore, the company’s funds can be banked in a zero tax offshore shelter or remitted to Singapore in view of obtaining a tax credit on expenses or taxes incurred while transferring the funds to Singapore or a full tax exemption if 15% or more was paid in any given country.

To offshore companies, Singapore assists in lowering the tax burden while presenting the opportunity of expanding consumer base throughout Asia and other parts of the world. Singapore offshore companies are not restricted in the types of business activities that may conduct once they are legal and can therefore target niche markets in new and innovative business sectors.

An advantage to incorporating in Singapore is that a Singapore offshore company is not limited to establishing any single or specific type of corporate structure for offshore purposes. A variety of legal entities such as companies limited by guarantee (Ltd.), foreign company branches, foreign companies and private limited companies (Pte Ltd.) can be incorporated and utilized as Singaporean offshore companies. Whatever legal structure that an entrepreneur chooses would be a matter of preference and suitability given the individual’s or corporation’s circumstances and objectives.

Factors which influence the type of Singaporean company that an entrepreneur incorporates for use as a Singapore offshore company include personal liability, chances of borrowing or accessing investment funds, incorporation time, documentation required, the level of privacy or anonymity achieved, tax efficiency and credibility as a legal entity.

To elaborate a bit, an individual who wishes to setup a Singapore company by himself, wants total control, easy setup and termination and does not want to split profits may opt for a sole proprietorship. On the other hand, another group of individuals may go for a partnership, which in Singapore may take the form of a general partnership, limited partnership or limited liability partnership. Due to the legal framework of these entities, however, they are generally not recognized as companies (in Singapore included) and are better used by Singapore based residents and activities, not as Singapore offshore companies.

While setting up companies overseas in a manner that optimizes taxes, it is always good to be aware that having a second nationality (like Dominica Citizenship) is essential in various ways. Firstly, second nationalities makes investing abroad much easier by not having to go through rigid procedures in place for non-nationals and helps to give access to friendlier operating conditions. Consequently, double nationality increases chances for profitability in business. Generally, second citizenship can be applied for following a having resided in a country as permanent resident for a certain number of years, however, there are programs for which information is available, that avoid such residency requirements.

Consequently, for use as a Singapore offshore company, a private limited company would be usually incorporated because of the ease of raising capital, limited liability, credibility as a corporate structure, tax benefits and incentives available in Singapore for the remission of funds or setup of a Singapore based production site, simple ownership transfer provisions and perpetuity. Alternative Singapore companies or corporate forms which can be used as offshore companies include foreign companies, branches and subsidiaries.

Wisely utilized, a Singapore offshore company can be of effective service especially given Singapore’s high repute as a developed international centre and rapidly emerging market. Singapore offshore companies do not only acquire the image of an international business company with less chance of being perceived as an ‘offshore company’ but can benefit from trade agreements that Singapore has with other countries. As a contemporary business hub, Singapore ranks at the top internationally for the most competitive and freest economy, best investment potential and cost-competitive place for business and represents a choice jurisdiction for offshore company formation.