Pest Analysis of Singapore

O Singapore is widely acknowledged as having one oI the best business environments in the
O One oI the world's most competitive nstitute for Management Development World
Competitiveness Yearbook)
O Most proIitable usiness Environment Risk ntelligence Report)
O Most transparent %ransparency nternational Survey)
O World-class intellectual property protection and enIorcement World Economic Forum
Global Competitiveness Report).
O The presence oI many leading global companies and local enterprises here is a testimony
to Singapore's excellence in manuIacturing and services.
O There are more than Multi-National Corporations in Singapore nowadays.
O Singapore is an attractive and competitive manuIacturing location, possessing world class
capabilities in the design, development and manuIacture oI cutting edge products Ior the
O As MNCs are always looking Ior the most cost eIIicient Ior its investment, Singapore`s
high labour rate loses out to other developing countries e.g. Vietnam and China.
O As some manuIacturers have leIt Singapore to other countries with cheaper labour, we
can see the transIormation Irom the manuIacturing activities into trading and services.
O n addition, by leveraging on its strength as the regional hub Ior services such as logistics
and education, Singapore is poised to become Asia's leading services hub, providing an
array oI world-class services.
%e following sections will analyze te factors Politic Economy Social and %ecnology)
tat influence te business environment in Singapore and also its limitation.

Singapore is an enterprise Iriendly country. The government has set up several organizations in
helping the business in a very systematic way.

Regulation Structure

Ministry of %rade and ndustry M%)
O %e Ministry of %rade and ndustry M%) has its vision to make Singapore a leading
global city oI talent, enterprise and innovation.
O ts mission is to promote economic growth and create jobs, so as to achieve higher
standards oI living Ior all.
O t was tasked with anticipating problems ahead, identiIying opportunities Ior growth,
rationalising existing policies and giving broad directions Ior the economy. The main
tasks are categorized as below:-
- Growing economy
- expanding trade
- developing industries
- fostering pro-enterprise environment
Statutory boards are semi-independent agencies that specialize in carrying out speciIic plans and
policies oI the Ministry. One oI such agencies under the MT is SPRNG Singapore.
O SPRNG Singapore Standards Productivity and nnovation oard) is the enterprise
development agency Ior growing innovative companies and Iostering a competitive SME
O SPRNG works with partners to help enterprises in Iinancing, capabilities and
management development, technology and innovation, and access to markets.
O As the national standards and accreditation body, SPRNG also develops and promotes
internationally- recognised standards and quality assurance to enhance competitiveness
and Iacilitate trade.
O t has many programmes to encourage entrepreneurship and assisting the Small and
Medium Enterprise (SME). These are two available Iinancial incentive schemes:-

i) usiness Angels Sceme AS) where they will provide innovative Singapore-based
young companies a matching dollar Ior every dollar invested by pre-approved angel
groups, up to $1.5 million.
ii) Young Entrepreneurs Sceme for Startups YES! Startups) where they will
provide youths with grants oI up to $50,000 to start their innovative business.

O SPRNG also provides business leadership and capability development where a numbers
oI training courses are conducted to improve leadership and business management skills.
Several available programs are:-
i) Advanced Management Programme AMP) where it will help to build management
capabilities oI SME leaders through postgraduate and executive development courses that Iocus
on the business management needs oI SMEs.
ii) Management Development Scolarsip MDS): Designed to nurture the leadership oI
tomorrow Ior growth-oriented enterprises where it provides MBA scholarship to help the SME to
develop their talent Ior the Iuture.
iii)EnterpriseOne OneNetwork forEnterprises) is a multi-agency initiative managed by
SPRNG Singapore. EnterpriseOne aims to help local enterprises Iind the answers they need to
start, sustain and grow their businesses. ts resources pose:-
· Ric And Deep Content
Over 20 sections covering a comprehensive range oI topics such as venturing abroad, hiring
people, Government tenders, loans, taxes and regulations. t pulled together inIormation Irom
diIIerent Government agencies so the business owners don't have to trudge Irom agency to
agency to look Ior answers.

· ndustry Guides
Topics are grouped by industries and organised in sections so that the business owners can easily
Iind inIormation relevant to your sector.
%e Competition Commission of Singapore under M%) who is a statutory body established
to enIorce the Competition Act (Chapter 50B) and ensure a Iair competition environment. Any
unIair business practice can be prevented and this can ensure a healthy competition and business
Another MT agency is Public Service for te 21st Century orPS21. t is about the Singapore
Public Service's commitment to Anticipate, Welcome and Execute change, inIluencing
developments in order to provide Singapore with the best conditions Ior success. One oI its main
objectives is to cut red tape to achieve service excellence and eIIiciency. Red tape reduction
deIinitely will encourage entrepreneurship, Ioreign investment and positive growth oI the
business sector.
Ministry of Finance MOF)
The main regulatory statutes under MOF are the Companies Act, Business Registration Act,
Currency Act and Accountants Act. The emphasis oI the regulatory policy is on development,
rather than control. MOF aims to collaborate with industry experts to make Singapore a world-
class Iinancial and business hub. The main strategy in helping the business in the Singapore is
building a Conducive Business Environment by Facilitate growth oI businesses and nurture an
entrepreneurial environment¨
Under the MOF, te Free %rade Agreement F%A) Directorate`s role is:
· To drive the development oI a holistic and cross-directorate/agency approach to the FTA issues
· To shape and balance the outcome oI the issues in the FTA negotiations to align with MOF's
policies and goals
· To Iunction as a centralized Iocal point within MOF Ior inIormation on all FTA issues
%e Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Autority ACRA) is one oI the statutory boards
under the MOF with mission to provide a responsive and Iorward looking regulatory
environment Ior companies, businesses and public accountants, conducive to enterprise and
growth in Singapore. The Iocus oI the statutory board will be on issues concerning businesses,
such as developing the corporate law Iramework, accounting and corporate governance.
Government E-usiness Portal
n an eIIort to promote transparency, the Singapore government has setup Ge Government
E-usiness Portal) who is the Singapore government's one-stop e-procurement portal. All the
public sector's invitations Ior quotations and tenders are posted on GeB. Suppliers can search
Ior government procurement opportunities, download tender documents, and submit their bids
O Singapore is a country where the enIorcement units are very eIIicient and with very low
corruption rate.
O The Singapore Police Force enjoys a relatively positive public image, and is credited Ior
helping to arrest Singapore's civic unrests and lawlessness in its early years, and
maintaining the low crime rate today.
O Another example is the taxis services where the drivers collect Iares by using the meter
and do not cheat the passengers.
O Taxis in Singapore are regulated by the Land Transport Authority. This gives the
passengers especially tourist peace oI mind in using taxi service. Any bad taxi service
may hamper the tourism industries.
Corruption Practices nvestigation ureau CP)
Singapore is reputed to be one oI the Iew countries in the world where corruption is under
control. This is due mainly to the strong political will to curb corruption, Iirm actions taken
against the corrupt regardless oI their status and background, and the general public who do not
accept corruption as a way oI liIe.
%e Corrupt Practices nvestigation ureau CP) is an independent body which
investigates and aims to prevent corruption in the public and private sectors in Singapore. The
bureau is responsible Ior saIeguarding the integrity oI the public service and encouraging
corruption-Iree transactions in the private sector.
Deregulation & liberalization
O Singapore has deregulated several markets, e.g. the electricity and telecommunication.
The government no more monopolized these markets, but it is open Ior competition
among the industry players.
O Even since 1989, the government oI Singapore started eliminating restrictions on the sale
oI telecom consumer goods to make businesses more competitive.
O Singapore is reliant on Ioreign direct investments and exports so competition Irom
countries with lower costs such as China and ndia is exerting pressure on the
government to reduce the costs oI doing business here.
O Deregulation is believed to be able to bring about lower electricity costs due to the
various eIIiciency gains possible.
O Since corporatisation the power industry has become more eIIicient and more reliable.
Customer service has improved. nvestments in new power plants and transmission
network inIrastructure have increased signiIicantly.
O The industry is also making healthy proIits through eIIiciency and productivity gains, and
lower cost oI purchase oI power equipment and cables.
O One oI the deregulation result is Y%L Power of Malaysia as acquired 1 interest
in Power Seraya Limited recently. Also te Cina Hua Neng Power as acquired
1 stake in te %uas Power Ltd. We can see the deregulation has attracted Ioreign
direct investment into the countries and thus accelerate its economic growth.
O Being Asia`s first liberalised electricity market, the Singapore government has
liberalized the electricity wholesale and retail market. This means contestable consumers
will have greater choice about how they purchase their electricity.
O Non-contestable consumers continue to buy electricity Irom SP Services Ltd at regulated
tariIIs. Eventually, all consumers in Singapore will become contestable. This certainly
has reduced the electricity bills Ior the industrial/business user and consumer.
O The government must be very careIul and governing the deregulated market and not to
repeat the Iailure encountered by the US deregulated energy market, where expenditures
become higher and consumers suIIered Irom the higher energy cost and was a Iailure in
the USA energy policy.
O Another example is the liberalization oI the civil aviation industry where the Ilyers can
Ily at lower cost. Following the establishment oI the low cost carrier e.g. Tiger Airways,
the major airlines also reduce the air Iares signiIicantly and this help in driving down
business expenses and accelerated growth especially in the tourism related industries e.g.
hotel, F&B services and local retail business.
Singapore government has been very careIul in allowing Ioreign hypermarket to operate in
Singapore. So Iar only the Malaysian`s Giant (4 outlets) and French`s CarreIour (2 outlets) are
allowed to operate on the island. Strict control has been taken to protect the retailer especially.
Non Government Organisation NGO)
NGO play an important role as pressure group in the government policy and implementation. As
part oI an eIIort to bolster tourism as more manuIacturing jobs shiIt to countries with lower
labour costs and in view oI the possibility that Singapore would lose out in its status as a tourist
hub as well as the economic beneIits Irom tax revenues, Singapore government has revisited the
idea oI building casino in Singapore in 2004.
This had generated substantial and intense public debate and objection Irom the NGOs as this
was not just a socio-economic policy dilemma, but has potential to touch the sensitive nerves oI
social identity, public morality and values and has bad implication on Singapore as a clean,
sterile, corruption- Iree and crime-Iree city. Further the NGOs protested that this development
will be at the expense oI the environment as the developer has to reclaim the sea Ior extra land
where ecology system will be spoilt.
However, aIter much debate about the tangible and intangible Iacts and costs, the government
Iinally approved the casino plan and it is now under construction. The completion oI this casino
together with the entertainment resort and other inIrastructure will certainly attract more Ioreign
tourists and boosting the domestic economy once the plan is completed.

O The Singapore economy is an example oI a vibrant free-market economy that is
developing at a rapid pace1.
O %e per-capita income of te country is te igest in ASEAN.
O The business sectort has been supported and strengthened by a corruption-Iree
environment, an educated and motivated workIorce, and well-established legal and
Iinancial business Iramework.
n recent years, the Singapore government has invested heavily in diversiIying the economy.
This has led to growth in the tourism industry, the pharmaceutical industry with a particular
Iocus on biotechnology, Iinancial services, business consultation services, education,
multimedia, retail and leisure, and the medical technology industry.
SigniIicantly Irom 2008-Q3 onwards, economic growth was rapidly slowing down
because oI the Iinancial crisis, while commodity prices hit unprecedented heights,
creating sharp inIlationary pressures in Singapore and other economies.
The data Ior this section are Ior the year 2008. Singapore acieved GDP current
market value) of S$2519 million wic is a 2.3 increment from te previous
year. n the Iourth quarter oI 2008, the economy contracted by 4.2 per cent, aIter posting
Ilat growth in the third quarter.
&nemployment rate as of end 2 is 2.3 wic is a .2 increment from year
2. However, the retrenchment rate has almost doubled Irom year 2007`s 7,700 to year
2008`s 13,400 workers.
This is certainly the consequence oI the global economic crisis, where almost no a single
country can be escaped.
Gross national income per capita was S$5139 wic is te igest per capita
income in ASEAN and making its citizen income on par with the developed nations. n
Iact, the city state is the only developed country in ASEAN.
%e services producing industries made up 6. of te overall economy and
manufacturing weigted at 19.. Financial services and business services as
become more and more important and made up 13.1 and 1. respectively of te
overall economy.
Petroleum refined products top te export list wit 23.. %is can be attributed to
te petrocemical complexes in 1urong sland.
This initiative has boosted the heavy petrochemical industries in the country and has
attracted Ioreign direct investment like the Exxon-Mobile ReIinery.
The limitation will be the pollution to the environment which will increase the social cost
like health care services.
Excange Rates
Currency excange rate is about &S$1. to S$1.5 range lately.
Due to its high exchange rate to the Ringgit Malaysia (S$1.00 ÷ RM2.40 approximately),
many Singapore residents like to cross the Tebrau Straits to Malaysia Ior weekend
Additionally, the comparative cheaper petrol price in Malaysia has attracted Singaporean
to Iill up their vehicle Iuel tank in Malaysia. These have directly aIIected the Singapore
domestic businesses and the petrol retailers. ThereIore the government has set the rule Ior
the car owner to have at least the Iuel tank / Iilled when travelling outbound to Malaysia.
On the other hand, the high exchange rate to Ringgit Malaysia and ndonesian Rupiah has
attracted many white and blue collars labours Irom these two neighbouring countries. Especially
the high numbers oI skilled workers Irom Malaysia has contributed to Singapore`s GDP growth
but on the other hand remarking loss in Ioreign exchange. On the other hand, construction and
heavy industries in Singapore are over dependant on Ioreign workers which in one hand has
become a threat to the social identity and saIety.

Monetary and Fiscal Policies
O The success oI Singapore's Iiscal policy over the years lies in the government's prudent
expenditure patterns and conducive taxation policies that have complemented monetary
policy in promoting sustained and non- inIlationary economic growth.
O Singapore's tax policies, although providing the main source oI Iunding Ior the
government, seek to enhance its economic competitiveness and attract Ioreign
investments to Singapore.
O n its udget 29 te Singapore government as announced %e Resilience
Package totalling S$2.5 billion to elp Singaporeans preserving teir jobs and
elping viable company stay afloat.
O %e government spent S$5. billion to stimulate bank lending. t also would spend
S$2.6 billion to enance business cas flow and competitiveness. Furter it also
allocated S$. billion to develop Singapore as a global city and best ome for
O Under the severe global economy crisis, Singapore government has justiIied withdrawal
Irom its past reserves to Iund the Jobs Credit Scheme and Special Risk-Sharing nitiative
to ensure that the Resilience Package will stimulate the business sector.
O This combination oI Iair tax policies and prudent expenditure programmes, augmented by
high economic growth has enabled Singapore to enjoy consistent budget surpluses over
the years. Singapore is one oI the very Iew countries who enjoy surplus in its economy
O n 2 as part of te government`s move to sare te nation`s surpluses wit its
citizens te government as allocated S$1.6 billion as growt dividend for tis
purpose wic benefited about 2. million Singaporean, especially those oI the lower
income. This allocation has help the lower income group to cope with the higher living
cost and in turn has stimulus the buying power in the market. However, the eIIectiveness
Ior the market stimulation is only Ior the short term.
O %e Official Foreign Reserves at Feb 29 is &S$16359. million and Singapore
government does not bear any Ioreign debt.
nternational %rade
O nternational Enterprise E) Singapore is the lead agency under the Ministry oI Trade
and ndustry spearheading the development oI Singapore's external economic wing.
O ts mission is to promote the overseas growth oI Singapore- based enterprises and
international trade. At the same time, E works to position Singapore as a base Ior Ioreign
businesses to expand into the region in partnership with Singapore-based companies.
O n championing international trade, E Singapore contributes to the Singapore economy
through active promotion oI export oI goods and services, and oIIshore trade. Singapore`s
Global %rader Programme G%P) which provides incentives to attract international
trading companies to set up their base in Singapore.
O The E`s Enterprise Group manages and develops a range oI broad-based services Ior
Singapore-based companies wanting to export internationalized goods.
O n 2 Singapore was ranked te 1t largest trading nation in te world
amounting to total of $6.6 billion of external trade wit Malaysia remained as te
biggest trade partner followed by E&.
O %e Port of Singapore is te world busiest port in term of total sipping tonnage. t
is also the world busiest container port and transhipment port. The Port oI Singapore is
not only a mere economic boon but an economic necessity as it is lack oI natural
resources and land.
O %e Maritime and Port Autority of Singapore was established with the mission to
develop Singapore as a premier global hub port and international maritime centre.
O The establishment oI Malaysia`s Port of %anjung Pelepas as treaten te Singapore
Port status as the rival has attracted pretigious maritime companies like Maesk and
Evergreen to switc over to %anjung Pelepas. Surely, the Singapore Port operator will
be Iacing more Iierce competition ahead.
O The Singapore Tourism Board aims to triple tourism receipts to $30 billion and double
visitor arrivals to 17 million visitors by 2015. t is working closely with international
investors to develop new world-class attractions (e.g. the casino), and attract strategic
business and leisure events to Singapore.
Singapore is an eastern country who still Iollows the traditional Iamily values, but the younger
generation has started to adopt to western culture and values.

Society Values and Principles
As nowadays, many Singaporean have the mindset oI ia-su¨ wic means afraid of
lose out to oters.
Many Singaporean works very hard to retain or IulIil their materialism desire.
n some extent this has positively increased the nation productivities and the business
sectors can expect a higher purchasing power Irom the consumers. On the other hand,
some Iamily and social values have to be sidelined.
Demograpic Profile
%e current population is about .mil.
Singapore ethnic mix is Cinese 5.2) Malays 13.6) and ndians ..
Most oI the Singaporean dislikes blue collar works like construction and other works in
hard environment. These are considered 'hard and dirty¨ works and thereIore not
welcome especially by the younger generation.
This created the window Ior importing Ioreign workers to Iill up blue collar vacancies.
With the cheaper labour Irom neighbouring countries, the business sector has enjoyed
cost saving and thereIore more can be reinvested Ior Iurther expansion.
O Singapore has codiIied compulsory education Ior children oI primary school age, and
made it a criminal oIIence iI parents Iail to enrol their children in school and ensure their
regular attendance.
O Englis is te primary language used in Singapore`s education systems. Good
command oI English has given Singapore an edge advantage Ior attracting Ioreign
investment and international trade.
O Further the Chinese language proIiciency among the Chinese ethnic has attracted the
investor Irom China, Taiwan and Hong Kong and on the other hand enable investing
ventures into these countries easily.
%e latest statistic sows tat te literacy rate stands at 96 wilst secondary or iger
qualification olders are 9. This is the driving Iorce Ior the government to promote
knowledge economy which is less labour incentive but more talent and intellectual are on
Besides, owing to the 'kia-su¨ mindset, the parents here are very concern about the perIormance
oI the kids in school. This has led to blossoming oI tuition centres and other arts/musical learning
Technology is the power behind to change our liIe style and improve out quality oI liIe.

%e nternet
O Comprehensive inIrastructure setup has been a Iundamental attractiveness Ior Ioreign
investment and local business establishment, not to mention about the T inIrastructure.
O Currently, the household broadband internet penetration rate has achieved more than
70°. %e successive of e-commerce and e2C model are igly relies on te
broadband internet.
O At of latest 1Mbps of broadband internet service is available. The comprehensive
T inIrastructure also has encourage MNC to setup their regional operation in Singapore.
The successIul oI the Iinancial and T services business are highly rely on the state oI the
art T inIrastructure.
O On the other hand, the Singapore government is moving towards an electronic
government era. Many useIul resources and inIormation are available in the relevant
ministries/department or government agencies website. For instance, the Customs OIIice
oI Singapore has provided e-service, these are Iew examples:-
i) Application Ior: ManuIacturer's Registration & New Product Line(s)
ii)Application Ior Registration oI Companies / Firms and Signatories Ior Customs and/or GST
iii) Application Ior GST relieI on household articles and personal eIIects
This approach enables to cut red tapes and enhanced the eIIiciency.

O Due to its lack oI water resources and the government would like to reduce its
dependence on the Malaysian supplied water, the Singaporean has ventured into water
recycling and desalination.
O NEWater is te brand name given to reclaimed water produced by Singapore's
public utilities. More speciIically, it is treated wastewater (sewage) that has been
puriIied using dual-membrane (via microIiltration and reverse osmosis) and ultraviolet
technologies, in addition to conventional water treatment processes.
Many experts suggested that Singapore could become the world's water hub Ior water recycling
and desalination technology and could export this technology to the world including China. With
the new technology in water reclamation, waste water would become the most important
sustainable water resource in the Iuture. Singaporean`s expertise in the water recycling will
deIinitely gives its edge advantage iI it exports this expertise and technology in the Iuture.
As a conclusion Irom the Iactors analysed above, we can conclude that Singapore business
success in the domestic and international platIorms are much beneIited Irom its government`s
policies and enterprise Iriendly approach. Together with its common tertiary education and the
hardworking and discipline oI its citizen, the success oI domestic business will ensure its
competitiveness in the international era.

Foreign Direct nvestment FD) in te Singaporean Economy

O %e &nited States embassy uses te following rule of tumb in estimating te
sources of production in Singapore:
O 6 of goods and services are produced by te public sector 25 by foreign
MNCs and only 15 by te Singaporean private sector.
O That is, Ioreign MNCs, which are especially prominent in the manuIacturing sector,
account Ior around a quarter oI Singapore`s national output.
O n Iact, it would be accurate to say that MNCs play a bigger role in Singapore than in
almost any other economy in the world.
O The massive amount oI foreign direct investment FD) brougt in by te MNCs has
served as an engine oI growth ever since the country`s independence in 1965.
O Although both developed and developing economies compete Iiercely Ior FD these days,
Singapore adopted a liberal open-door policy toward Ioreign investors long beIore it was
Iashionable to do so.
O The combination oI a strongly pro-FD government and generally favorable
environment meant tat Singapore as been and continues to be a igly attractive
location for foreign capital.

Singapore`s %ax Structure and Corporate %ax System

The size oI the government in Singapore, measured by the ratio oI government
expenditures to GDP, is signiIicantly lower than other countries oI similar income levels
and has been decreasing over time.
%is ratio as ranged between 1 and 2 during 1996-25 averaging around
%e ratio of tax revenues to GDP, another measure oI the size oI the government, also
shows a similar downward trend over time.
The relatively small and decreasing size oI the public sector is a result oI deliberate
government policy over recent decades. Such trends are also consistent with the country`s
well-known extreme Iiscal conservatism.
Since 195 the government has usually run a budget surplus, which exceeded 1 of
GDP for seven consecutive years during 199-1995.
However, the slowdown oI economic growth since the Asian crisis of 199-199 has
constrained the growth oI government revenues, which led to weaker Iiscal positions.
The government`s ingrained spending restraint allows Ior a Iairly low-tax Iiscal regime.

Let us now take a closer look at te structure of te Singaporean
government`s revenues and expenditures to better understand te country`s
fiscal realities.

Customs taxes are relatively small due to Singapore`s highly liberal trade regime and
excise taxes are imposed primarily on alcohol and tobacco. Asset taxes reIer to the
property tax and estate duty, while other taxes reIer to stamp duty, betting taxes and
Ioreign worker levy.
Singapore generally imposes tax on a territorial basis i.e. companies are subject to
tax on income derived in Singapore and on Ioreign income received in Singapore
regardless oI whether the company is resident or non-resident. A company is resident in
Singapore iI the control and management oI the company is exercised in Singapore.
n general, the control and management oI the company is taken to be the place where
the oard of Directors' meetings are held. Tax is only payable aIter an assessment has
been issued. Every company has to provide an estimate oI its taxable income within three
months oI the end oI its accounting period.
An estimated assessment will then be raised and the tax assessed must be paid within one
month, unless arrangement is made to pay the tax in installments. Tax returns are due by
31 1uly each year Ior income earned in the accounting period ended in the preceding year
although Iurther extensions oI time may be granted on a case-by-case basis. A company
is taxed at a Ilat rate on its chargeable income.
A notable aspect of Singapore`s corporate taxation system is tat capital gains are
not taxable. A major recent development was the replacement oI the imputation system,
under which tax assessed on a resident company in respect oI its normal chargeable
income are passed on as tax credit to its shareholders upon distribution oI dividend, with
the one-tier corporate tax system, which came into eIIect on 1st 1anuary 23.
Under the one-tier system, which applies to both resident and non-resident companies,
tax paid by a company on its normal chargeable income is Iinal and all dividends paid are
exempt Irom tax in the hands oI its shareholders. Also, te Singaporean corporate tax
system allows unutilized tax losses and capital allowances to be carried forward
indefinitely to offset future taxable income.
Generally, plant and equipment except motor vehicles qualiIy Ior accelerated
depreciation at 33 1/3 per year on a straight-line basis. Alternatively, a company may
choose to claim an initial allowance of 2 and annual allowances ranging from 6
years to 16 years on a straight-line basis.
A company in Singapore may Iace double taxation when the overseas income is remitted
into Singapore. However, a resident company is entitled to the beneIits conIerred under
the Avoidance of Double %axation Agreements D%A) that Singapore has concluded.
Singapore has entered into 51 compreensive and limited D%As worldwide. A DTA
between Singapore and another country serves to relieve double taxation oI income
earned in one country by a resident oI the other country.
Singapore seeks to minimize double taxation by actively pursuing D%As. 4 Singapore`s
Foreign Direct nvestment FD) Policies Singapore`s remarkable success in attracting
FD inIlows owes a great deal to the deliberate and Iar-sighted strategic decision oI the
government to rely on FD as an engine oI economic growth long beIore doing so
became globally Iashionable.
n view oI this Iact it is ardly surprising tat te Singaporean government as
actively pursued and is still actively pursuing a package of policies to attract foreign
investors in particular large and well-establised MNCs.
While corporate taxes are only one element oI FD, they are certainly an important
element and countries that attract signiIicant FD inIlows tend to have internationally
competitive corporate tax regimes. Singapore is no exception in this regard and it enjoys
a widespread perception among MNCs as a low-tax country.
Singapore does not ave an explicit industrial policy. However, the combination oI
various incentives and restrictions can amount to more or less an industrial
policy.Although the Iundamental objective oI the incentives was to attract Ioreigcapital,
they did not speciIically discriminate in Iavor oI Ioreign investment anagainst domestic
Foreign companies beneIited more in practice due to thunder developed state oI the
domestic manuIacturing sector in the country`s early years. %e Pioneer ndustries
Ordinance was passed in 1959, providing tax relieI Ior Iive years; this was subsequently
extended to 1 years Ior some high-tech industries.The ndustrial Expansion Ordinance
was also passed in 1959, providing tax relieI to Iirms that increased production oI
approved goods.
To accelerate orientation toward exports, the ncome %ax Amendment Act was
introduced in 1965, allowing tax cuts Ior market development expenditures and double-
tax deduction Ior expenses incurred in export promotion. %e Economic Expansion
ncentives Act passed in 196, reduced corporate taxes on approved manuIactures and
exports, lowered tax on royalties, licenses, technical assistance Iees, as well as
contributions to research and development (R&D) costs to be paid to overseas
enterprises. Subsidized financing of exports became available in 19 and te Export
Credit nsurance Corporation wit 5 per cent government participation was
establised in 195.
%e main government veicle for promoting FD was te ED set up under te
Ministry of Finance in 1961.5 ED enjoys a substantial degree of autonomy and
operational independence and provides loans and equity financing tecnical and
marketing assistance as well as industrial training scemes including training of
unskilled workers.
Furthermore, a wide range oI new incentives have been added over the years to promote
FD inIlows. Broadly speaking, the prevailing system oI tax incentives is currently as
O A pioneer industry is eligible Ior a Iive-year income tax holiday and the Minister
oI Finance may oIIer a concessionary tax rate of 1 Ior another Iive years.
O A group oI industries are granted investment allowances oI up to 5 per cent Ior
expenditures incurred on plant, machinery, know-how, patent rights and Iactory
buildings Ior approved projects, as well as normal capital allowances. These
industries were manuIacturing, technical services, construction, production oI
drinking water, engineering, consulting and research services, computer-based
inIormation operations, industrial design development and certain other services.
Let us now look at the Singaporean government`s regulations, or lack thereoI, in Iour
diIIerent areas relevant Ior Ioreign investors.
The Iour areas are the Ioreign exchange regime, equity ownership, perIormance
requirements and human resources.
First, the Ioreign exchange regime is highly liberal and Ireely allows
repatriation oI capital and remittance oI proIits, dividends,
interests, royalty payments and technical licensing Iees, as well as the Iree importation
oI goods and services Ior consumption, investment and production purposes.
Second, Ioreign participation is permitted in most sectors oI the economy
except Ior some
restrictions in the Iinancial services, proIessional services and media sectors, and 1
per cent Ioreign equity ownership is readily permitted.
%ird, there are no perIormance requirements Ior Ioreign investors such as
domestic value-added content and local sourcing oI inputs, no restrictions on
borrowing Irom the domestic capital market, and no regulations and
restrictions governing the transIer oI technology.
Fourt, there are only minimal restrictions on the recruitment oI Ioreign
personnel; employment passes are required but the government issues these
quite liberally.
However, the government does encourage Ioreign companies to hire local managerial
and technical personnel. We have seen that the Singaporean government`s investment incentives
comparably Iavorably with those oI most countries and their impact is reinIorced by the relative
absence oI regulations and perIormance requirements.
Let us now examine the actual eIIectiveness oI the investment incentives in promoting
FD inIlows. BeIore we do so, we should point out that in Singapore incentives are
granted on a case-by-case basis and can be tailored to particular Iirms, allowing Ior
greater Ilexibility in promoting FD.
Foreign companies in strategic sectors such as electronics and biotechnology have been
able to negotiate Iirm-speciIic Iiscal incentive packages with Iiscal authorities.
Furthermore, in some cases such as waIer chip Iabrication plants, the EDB has provided
manpower training at public expense and take a signiIicant equity stake in new ventures.
According to lomqvist 25) despite the pervasiveness oI the investment incentives,
their actual eIIectiveness is subject to debate. t is possible that Singapore`s economic
structure would have evolved in a similar way even in the absence oI the selective
measures. That is, the targeted industries which the government promoted through
investment incentives may have been the industries in which Singapore had a natural
comparative advantage to begin with.
n the Singaporean context government`s effective provision oI public goods such as
strong physical and institutional inIrastructure and R&D support might have been more
n terms oI Iormal econometric analysis, one avenue Ior investigating the impact oI taxes
and other investment-relevant Iactors on FD is to use data Irom a cross-section oI
According to Cirinko and Meyer 199) conservative estimates suggest that a
percentage-point in the eIIective tax rate on capital would cause capital investment to Iall
by at least halI a percentage point and, Ior some industries, by as much as 1. percentage
A recent analysis by de Mooij and Ederveen 23) based on many empirical studies
shows that cross-border capital Ilows are highly sensitive to tax rates an increase oI one
percentage point in the corporate income tax rate causes the FD stock to Iall by more
than 3 percent.
n another study, using a panel oI bilateral FD Ilows Ior 11 OECD countries over
19-2 enassy-Quere Fontagne and Larece-Revil 23) Iind that tax
diIIerentials also play a signiIicant role in understanding Ioreign location decisions.
Gropp and ostial 21) point out that within the OECD countries with relatively high
corporate tax rates have experienced both high net outIlows oI FD and a decline in
corporate tax revenue.
Econometric analysis oI a cross-section oI countries tells us whether on average
countries with lower tax rates attract more FD inIlows.
This necessarily calls Ior a time-series analysis oI Singaporean data.
O One problem with such a time-series study is that many Ioreign Iirms
enjoy IirmspeciIic Iiscal incentive packages rather than the published set
oI incentives.
O Moreover, Singapore`s overall business environment, which is only
partially dependent on tax rates and Iiscal incentives, is highly conducive
to FD inIlows.
O n any case, unIortunately, there are very Iew Singapore-speciIic
econometric studies oI the impact oI corporate tax rates on FD.
O oe 2) uses the methodology oI Slemrod 199) and annual time-
series data Ior 19-2 to econometrically investigate the eIIect oI the
corporate income tax rate as well as some other variables including
exchange rate and labor cost on FD inIlows into Singapore.
O Her main Iinding is that FD inIlows are negatively related to the
corporate tax rate at te 95 level oI signiIicance.
O A one percentage point reduction in corporate tax rate increases the ratio
oI FD to GDP by 1.26.
O n an earlier study on the inIlows oI FD Irom six industrialized
countries into Singapore and three other East Asian economies, Chen
1995) uses a seemingly unrelated regression model Ior pooled data Irom
O His results suggest that changes in Singapore`s taxation environment do
not aIIect FD inIlows.

SE Policy of Singapore:-
O Singapore is actively considering developing a Special Economic one SE) in ndia
to bring in a large range of industries.
O This is indicated in the joint statement on the mid-term review oI the ndia-Singapore
Compreensive Economic Cooperation Agreement CECA), which was jointly
conducted by Sri amal Nat Minister of Commerce and ndustry on behalI oI the
Government oI ndia and Singapore`s Minister Ior %rade&ndustry Lin Hng iang on
31 Marc 26.
O The Ministers agreed that the mid-term review provided both sides with an opportunity to
consider both the implementation oI the agreement to date and how it cold be Iurther
enhanced in order to provide an attractive and Iacilitative Iramework Ior businesses.
O Both Ministers endorsed the suggestion that teams Irom both countries should engage in
discussions to Iollow up and improve on the CECA by 1 August 26.
O The Ministers welcomed the interest oI ndian and Singapore banks to expand in each
other`s markets as banks play a critical role in Iacilitating trade and investments.
O Both countries also discussed a proposal Irom ndia on Iacilitating the entry oI generic
medicinal products.
O Both ndia and Singapore were encouraged by the good progress made on the MRA on
architectural services.
O ndia agreed with Singapore on the need to encourage the mutual recognition agreements
pertaining to proIessionals MRAs Ior accountants, doctors, dentists and nurses to be
concluded by 1 August 26.
O Singapore and ndia discussed the value oI Iine-tuning the provisions oI the Avoidance
of double %axation Agreement D%AA) with a view to Iurther encouraging

Singapore %rade Exports and mports
4 Singapore has a thriving economy despite its lack oI resources and small domestic market.
4 The reason Ior the nation`s economic prosperity is its strategic location which Iacilitates
international trade.
4 %e Port of Singapore te biggest and busiest in te world is te backbone of Singapore
4 Singapore port is surrounded by key world economy players, including ndia to te west
Australia to te sout-east and 1apan and Cina to te nort.
4 The port boasts oI rapid Ioreign shipment processing and Iast customs clearance process.
Additionally, the port`s policies and state-oI-the-art inIrastructure Iacilitate the creation oI a Iree
market economy, providing easier access to global trade partners Ior exports and imports.

Singapore %rade Exports and mports: Overview
The Singapore economy is heavily dependent on exports, which contributed $26.9
billion to the nation`s net earnings in 2009.
Key export commodities include:
Consumer electronics
nformation tecnology products
Petroleum products
Singapore's principal imports are crude oil, electronic components, industrial machinery,
motor vehicles, Iood and beverages, and iron and steel.
During 29 according to CA reports Singapore imports fell sort of exports by
$23.9 billion.
From the Singapore export-import scenario it is evident that the nation practices an
extended concept oI entrepot` trade; werein it purcases raw goods and refines
tem for re-export.
Major trade partners oI Singapore and their share in its total trade, according to CA reports
for 29, include:
mport Export

Hong ong 11.6 &S 1.
Malaysia 11.5 Malaysia 11.6
&S 11.2 Cina 1.5
ndonesia 9. 1apan .6
Singapore %rade Agreements
Singapore pursues several Iree trade agreements. As of 29 te nation ad 16 bilateral and
multi-lateral trade agreements wit 2 trading partners, including:
O Association of Souteast Asian Nations Free %rade Area AF%A)
O ASEAN-ndia AF%A)
O ASEAN-1apan A1CEP)
O Australia SAF%A)
O Cooperation Council for te Arab States of te Gulf GSF%A)
O &nited States &SSF%A)
Singapore continues to negotiate trade agreements wit oter nations including Canada
uwait and Panama to furter facilitate Singapore trade. Singapore government as also
setup a transparent regulatory system to encourage foreign investment and trade.

Service Exports
Duty free import facility for service sector aving a minimum foreign excange
earning of Rs.1 laks.
%e duty free entitlement sall be 1 of te average foreign excange earned in
te preceding tree licensing years.
However for otels te same sall be 5 of te average foreign excange earned in
te preceding tree licensing years.
This entitlement can be used Ior import oI oIIice equipments, proIessional equipments,
spares and consumables. However, imports oI agriculture and dairy products shall not be
allowed Ior imports against the entitlement. The entitlement and the goods imported
against such entitlement shall be non-transIerable.
Status Holders
O Duty-free import entitlement for status olders aving incremental growt of more
tan 25 in FO value of exports in free foreign excange).
O %is facility sall owever be available to status olders aving a minimum export
turnover of Rs.25 crore in free foreign excange).
O %e duty free entitlement sall be 1 of te incremental growt in exports and
can be used for import of capital goods office equipment and inputs for teir own
factory or te factory of te associate/supporting manufacturer/job worker.
O %e entitlement/ goods sall not be transferable. %is facility sall be available on
te exports made from 1..23.
O Annual Advance Licence facility for status olders to be introduced to enable tem
to plan for teir imports of raw material and components on an annual basis and
take advantage of bulk purcases.
O %e nput-Output norms for status olders to be fixed on priority basis witin a
period of 6 days.
O Status olders in S%P sall be permitted free movement of professional equipments
like laptop/computer.
To give a boost to electronic hardware industry, supplies oI all 217 TA-1 items Irom EHTP
units to DTA shall qualiIy Ior IulIillment oI export obligation.
To promote growth oI exports in embedded soItware, hardware shall be admissible Ior duty Iree
import Ior testing and development purposes. Hardware upto a value of &S$ 1 sall be
allowed to be disposed off subject to S%P certification.
1 depreciation to be available over a period of 3 years to computer and computer
periperals for units in EO&/EH%P/S%P/SE .
Gem & 1ewellery Sector
O Diamond & Jewellery Dollar Account Ior exporters dealing in purchase/sale oI diamonds
and diamond studded jewellery.
O Nominated agencies to accept payment in dollars Ior cost oI import oI precious metals
Irom EEFC account oI exporter.
O Gem & Jewellery units in SE and EOUs can receive precious metal i.e
Gold/silver/platinum prior to exports or post exports equivalent to value oI jewellery
exported. This means that they can bring export proceeds in kind against the present
provision oI bringing in cash only.
Export Clusters
Upgradation oI inIrastructure in existing clusters/industrial locations under the Department oI
ndustrial Policy & Promotion (DPP) scheme to increase overall competitiveness oI the export
Supplemental eIIorts to be made under the ASDE scheme and similar schemes oI other
Ministries to bridge technology and productivity gaps in identiIied clusters.
10 such clusters with high growth potential to be reinvigorated based on a participatory
Reabilitation of Sick &nits
For revival oI sick units, extension oI export obligation period to be allowed to such units based
on BFR rehabilitation schemes. This Iacility shall also be available to units outside the purview
oI BFR but operating under the State rehabilitation programme.
Removal of Quantitative Restrictions
mport oI 69 items covering animal products, vegetables and spices, antibiotics and Iilms
removed Irom restricted list.
Export oI 5 items namely paddy except basmati, cotton linters, rare earth, silk cocoons, Iamily
planning devices except condoms removed Irom restricted list.
Special Economic ones Sceme
Sales Irom Domestic TariII Area (DTA) to SEs to be treated as export. This would now entitle
domestic suppliers to Drawback/ DEPB beneIits, CST exemption and Service Tax exemption.
Agriculture/Horticulture processing SE units will now be allowed to provide inputs and
equipments to contract Iarmers in DTA to promote production oI goods as per the requirement oI
importing countries. This is expected to integrate the production and processing and help in
promoting SEs specialising in agro exports.
Foreign bound passengers will now be allowed to take goods Irom SEs to promote trade,
tourism and exports.
Domestic sales by SE units will now be exempt Irom SAD.
Restriction oI one year period Ior remittance oI export proceeds removed Ior SE units.
Netting oI export permitted Ior SE unit provided it is between same exporter and importer over
a period oI 12 months.
SE units permitted to take jobwork abroad and exports goods Irom there only.
SE units can capitalise import payables.
Wastage Ior subcontracting/exchange by gem and jewellery units in transactions between SE
and DTA will now be allowed.
Export/import oI all products through post parcel/courier by SE units will now be allowed.
The value oI capital goods imported by SE units will now be amortised uniIormly over 10
SE units will now be allowed to sell all products including gems and jewellery through
exhibitions and duty Iree shops or shops set up abroad
Goods required Ior operation and maintenance oI SE units will now be allowed duty Iree.
EO& Sceme
Agriculture/Horticulture processing EOUs will now be allowed to provide inputs and equipments
to contract Iarmers in DTA to promote production oI goods as per the requirement oI importing
countries. This is expected to integrate the production and processing and help in promoting agro
EOUs are now required to be only net positive Ioreign exchange earner and there will now be no
export perIormance requirement.
Foreign bound passengers will now be allowed to take goods Irom EOUs to promote trade,
tourism and exports.
The value oI capital goods imported by EOUs will now be amortized uniIormly over 10 years.
Period oI utilisation oI raw materials prescribed Ior EOUs increased Irom 1 year to 3 years.
Gems and jewellery EOUs are now being permitted sub-contracting in DTA.
Wastage Ior subcontracting/exchange by gem and jewellery units in transactions between EOUs
and DTA will now be allowed as per norms.
Export/import oI all products through post parcel/courier by EOUs will now be allowed.
EOUs will now be allowed to sell all products including gems and jewellery through exhibitions
and duty Iree shops or shops set up abroad
Gems and jewellery EOUs will now be entitled to advance domestic sales.
EPCG sceme
The scheme shall now allow import oI capital goods Ior pre-production and post-production
Iacilities also.
The Export Obligation under the scheme shall now be linked to the duty saved and shall be 8
times the duty saved.
To Iacilitate upgradation oI existing plant and machinery, import oI spares shall also be allowed
under the scheme.
To promote higher value addition in exports, the existing condition oI imposing an additional
Export Obligation oI 50° Ior products in the higher product chain to be done away with.
Greater Ilexibility Ior IulIillment oI export obligation under the scheme by allowing export oI
any other product manuIactured by the exporter. This shall take care oI the dynamics oI
international market.
Capital goods upto 10 years old shall also be allowed under the scheme.
To Iacilitate diversiIication into the soItware sector, existing manuIacturer exporters will be
allowed to IulIill export obligation arising out oI import oI capital goods under the scheme Ior
setting up oI soItware units through export oI manuIactured goods oI the same company.
Royalty payments received Irom abroad and testing charges received in Iree Ioreign exchange to
be counted Ior discharge oI export obligation under EPCG scheme.
DEP Sceme
Facility Ior provisional DEPB rate introduced to encourage diversiIication and promote export oI
new products.
DEPB rates rationalised in line with general reduction in Customs duty.
Advance Licence
Standard nput Output Norms Ior 403 new products notiIied.
Anti-dumping and saIeguard duty exemption to advance licence Ior deemed exports Ior supplies
to EO&/SE/EH%P/S%P.
DFRC Sceme
Duty Free Replenisment Certificate scheme extended to deemed exports to provide a boost to
domestic manuIacturer.
Value addition under DFRC sceme reduced from 33 to 25.
Reduction of %ransaction Cost
High priority being accorded to the ED implementation programme covering all major
community partners in order to minimise transaction cost, time and discretion. We are now
gearing ourselves to provide on line approvals to exporters where exports have been eIIected
Irom 23 ED ports.
Online issuance oI mporter-Exporter CodeEC) number by linking te DGF% ED
network wit te ncome %ax PAN database is under progress.
Applications Iiled electronically shall have a 50° lower processing Iee as compared to manual

Singaporean Management Style
O As beIits a hierarchical structure, managers tend to be older which in itselI lends them an air oI
O As in the rest oI Asia, age still implies wisdom and people will be more comIortable dealing with
an older manager than a young 'wizz-kid'.
O Managers delegate decisions to their teams and expect the decisions to be overtly respected.
O This does not mean, however, that the rational behind the decision is never debated - it is merely
that any dissension is likely to be aired in a more private manner than in the Iull plenum oI an
open meeting. (This, again, may not hold true when dealing into a Singapore-based MNC.)
O As in all basically ConIucian business cultures, the manager expects to be respected and obeyed
and in return Ior loyalty and dedication to the cause will show a much more holistic interest in the
well being oI his team.
O This includes an almost paternal regard Ior many aspects oI a subordinate's liIe. The manager's
relationship with the team does not necessarily Iinish at the end oI the working day.
O Outside Iamily ties, promotion will be based on merit and perIormance criteria rather than
connections. The perIormance criteria may, however, diIIer Irom those in the West and top oI the
list may be the ability to create a harmonious team in which people Ieel at ease.
eing a Manager in Singapore
SuccessIul cross cultural management is more likely iI you bear in mind that business in
Singapore is Iormal and strict rules oI protocol are generally observed.
The group (company or department) is viewed as more important than the individual.
People observe a strict chain oI command, which comes with expectations on both sides.
n order to keep others Irom losing Iace, much communication will be non-verbal and
you must closely watch the Iacial expressions and body language oI people you work
Relationships take time to develop. You must be patient as this indicates that your
organization is here Ior the long-term and is not looking only Ior short-term gains.
%e Role of a Manager
Cross cultural management needs to bear in mind that each person has a very distinct role
within the organization, and maintaining that role helps to keep order.
n Singapore, as in other hierarchical societies, managers may take a somewhat
paternalistic attitude to their employees. They may demonstrate a concern Ior employees
that goes beyond the workplace and strictly proIessional concerns.
This may include involvement in their Iamily, housing, health, and other practical liIe
Approac to Cange
Singapore`s intercultural adaptability and readiness Ior change is developing all the time.
Singapore is seen to have a medium tolerance Ior change and risk.
t is important Ior innovations to have a track record or history noting the beneIits iI they
are to be accepted and implemented.
The Iear oI exposure, and the potential oI embarrassment that may accompany Iailure,
brings about aversion to risk. Because oI this attitude, intercultural sensitivity is going to
be required, especially when conducting group meetings and discussing contributions
made my participating individuals.
Approac to %ime and Priorities
Singapore is generally quite careIul about time guidelines in business situations where schedules
and deadlines are regarded seriously. EIIective cross cultural management skill will depend on
the individual`s ability to meet deadlines.
Decision Making
Singapore is a hierarchical culture, so the boss is considered to be superior to their subordinates.
Subordinates do not ask their boss questions, as it would indicate that the boss had not done a
good job oI explaining what was necessary. Subordinates will canvass other workers and come
to a group consensus oI what should be done and how it should be accomplished.
The respect a Singaporean shows their boss might seem strange to many western cultures.
Bosses are treated with the same respect one shows their parents.
Since asking questions is not part oI the culture, managers spend a great deal oI time writing
instructions that guarantee everyone will understand what`s required oI them.
oss or %eam Player
I you are working in Singapore, it is important to remember that Iace and reputation play
an important role.
The risk becomes ampliIied in a team or collaborative setting and iI you would like to
encourage participation it is important Iirst to clearly establish a non-threatening work
environment and communicate Iully that their participation is desired.
Cross cultural sensitivity is essential and you must avoid exposing or potentially
embarrassing anyone in public.
Communication and Negotiation Styles
O Always send a list oI people who will be attending the negotiations and their title well in
O Personal relationships are crucial to conducting business.
O Singaporeans must like you and Ieel comIortable with you to do business.
O Always wait to be told where to sit.
O There is a strict hierarchy that must be Iollowed.
O Business negotiations happen at a slow pace and patience may be a necessary cross
cultural attribute.
O Singaporeans are non-confrontational. %ey will not overtly say "no"; likewise
teir "yes" does not always signify agreement.
O Singaporeans give a respectIul pause oI up to 15 seconds beIore answering a question. I
you are signing a contract with ethnic Chinese, the signing date may be determined by an
astrologer or a geomancer (Ieng shui practitioner).
Swedis Management n Singapore
O The concept oI Scandinavian management as a specialized Iield oI interest, began in the
early 1980s with a variety oI methods, including quantitative questionnaires, surveys,
case studies and narratives within the organization.
O This dissertation uses discourse analysis as a tool Ior studying Swedish management
characteristics outside oI Scandinavia, mainly in Singapore.
O The Singapore Chinese management style is also presented and investigated as a
comparative style oI management to the Swedish management style in Singapore.
O Does tere exist a Swedis management style outside of Sweden? And if yes is it
different from te Swedis management style or model in Sweden?
O nterviews were conducted in 2004, with 33 Scandinavian and Asian top-level managers
in Swedish managed organizations based in Singapore, in order to get insight into their
working lives in a cross-cultural environment.
O %is rendered a total of about 5 ours interview time wit a database of more tan
26 words.
O The study Iound that a distinct Swedish management style existed in Swedish managed
organizations in Singapore as many oI the Swedes who worked in Singapore saw
themselves as a culture bearer` so that they brought over values and work processes
Irom Sweden, to Singapore.
O As the Swedish management style diIIers Irom the Singapore Chinese management style,
cooperative adjustments and eIIorts at working together were also made such as Iinding a
best practice method Ior doing things in the oIIice.
O This study is inherently cross-disciplinary in nature, contributing not only to linguistics,
but to the Iields oI leadership / management studies, human resource management and
speciIically Swedish management studies.

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