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24 March 2017
MAS proposes a new corporate structure for investment funds 

The Monetary Authourtiy of Singapore (MAS) has commenced a public consultation on a new corporate structure for investment funds - the Singapore Variable Capital Company (S-VACC), which would offer asset managers greater flexibility and lower costs. MAS seeks to offer a flexible and efficient platform for fund managers to co-locate fund domiciliation with their substantive fund management activities in Singapore and further deepened the asset servicing ecosystem. 

The public consultation will end on 24 April 2017. 

Click here for more information. 

24 March 2017
Important changes to the Singapore Companies Act and Limited Liability Partnerships (LLP) Act

Companies (Amendment) Bill 2017 and Limited Liability Partnerships (Amendment) Bill 2017 were passed in Parliament on 10 March 2017. The key changes include making ownership and control of business entities in Singapore more transparent, introduction of inward re-domiciliation regime and increased record keeping requirements. 

 

Click here for more details.

17 March 2017
Changes to the Companies Act and Limited Liability Partnerships Act

The Ministry of Finance (MOF) and ACRA conducted a review of the Companies Act in 2016 which culminated in the Companies (Amendment) Bill 2017 and Limited Liability Partnerships (Amendment) Bill which were passed in Parliament on 10 Mar 2017. These amendments aim to reduce regulatory burden on companies and limited liability partnerships (LLPs), improve the ease of doing business in Singapore and the transparency of the ownership and control of companies and LLPs. 

Click here for more information.

13 March 2017
Joint press release on measures relating to residential property

The Government has continued to review conditions in the residential property market and determined that the current set of property market measures remain necessary to promote a sustainable residential property market and financial prudence among households.

The Ministry of Finance (MOF) will make calibrated adjustments to the Seller’s Stamp Duty (SSD) and Total Debt Servicing Ratio (TDSR) framework, with effect from 11 March 2017. 

Click here for the full press release. 

20 February 2017
Regulation of VC Managers

Singapore is proposing to ease regulations for venture capital managers in a bid to promote financing for startup development.

Under a consultation paper published by the Monetary Authority of Singapore Wednesday, new and existing VC managers won’t be subject to the same capital requirements and business conduct rules that currently apply to fund managers in general. The MAS will focus primarily on fitness and propriety, and will retain regulatory powers to deal with errant VC managers, the central bank said in a statement.

The MAS issued a statement Monday outlining a series of plans to support and implement recommendations made by an economic panel last week. The Committee on the Future Economy presented strategies aiming to support growth at an average rate of 2 percent to 3 percent annually in the coming years.

Under the proposals, the central bank won’t require VC managers to have directors and representatives with at least five years of relevant experience in fund management, and base capital and risk-based capital requirements will also be removed for them, according to the statement Wednesday.

It also won’t require the VC managers to provide independent valuation, internal audits and audited financial statements to be submitted to the MAS.

Click here for more details. 

27 January 2017
New related party transactions reporting requirement for Singapore taxpayers from YA 2018

Click here for more details.

7 November 2016
IRAS: Research & Development Tax Measures

Click here for more details.

27 October 2016
MOF and ACRA invite public feedback on proposed legislative changes to introduce an inward re-domiciliation regime in Singapore

The Ministry of Finance (MOF) and the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) invite the public to provide feedback on proposed amendments to the Companies Act to introduce an inward re-domiciliation regime in Singapore. This public consultation will run from 26 October 2016 to 16 November 2016.

Click here for more details. 

24 October 2016
Singapore Country-by-Country Reporting Requirements 

Singapore will implement Country-by-Country Reporting (CbCR) for Singapore Multinational Enterprise (MNE) groups from FY 2017 onwards [in contrast to FY2016 as per the OECD Report].

CbCR will be supplementary information to the group and local entity level documentation required to be maintained as per the IRAS’ Transfer Pricing Guidelines.

Click here for more details.

12 October 2016
Singapore Audit Exemption: Fewer companies now require audit

As part of amendments to the Singapore Companies Act, a significant number of companies that previously required an audit will no longer do so.  

The changes take effect for financial periods starting on or after 1st July 2015.  

Click here for more details.

3 October 2016
We are Moving to our New Home! 

We are pleased to announce our new office address effective Monday, 10 October 2016: 

160 Robinson Road #17-01
SBF Center
Singapore 068914

Our telephone and fax numbers remain unchanged as follows:
Telephone: +65 6532 5746
Fax: +65 6532 7680
Email: office@iyerpractice.com

5 September 2016
MAS Tightens Outsourcing Rules for Fund Managers and other Financial Institutions

Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) recently released New Outsourcing Guidelines

  • New guidelines increase the requirements of institutions for oversight and controls over outsourcing arrangements
     
  • Previous guidelines applied primarily to Licensed financial institutions.  The new guidelines also apply to Registered Fund Management Companies, Exempt Corporate Finance Advisers and Financial Advisers.
     
  • Institutions must perform an assessment of its existing arrangements by 26th October 2016, with rectifications by 26th July 2017

Click here for more details.

27 July 2016
Update to Employment Pass Salary Criteria

From 1 January 2017, the qualifying salary for Employment Pass (EP) applications will be raised from $3,300 to $3,600. Only new EP applicants who can command a monthly salary of $3,600 or more, subject to meeting other criteria on qualifications and experience, will be considered. Those with more years of experience are also required to command higher salaries commensurate with their work experience and skill sets, as per current practice.

Lead time will be provided for businesses to make adjustments. Existing EP holders whose passes expire:

  1. Before 1 January 2017: Will be able to renew, for a duration of up to three years, based on existing EP criteria.
  2. Between 1 January 2017 and 30 June 2017 (both dates inclusive): Will be able to renew, for a duration of one year, based on the existing EP criteria.
  3. 1 July 2017 onwards: Will have to meet the new criteria for renewal, for a duration of up to three years.


Employers are encouraged to use the Self-Assessment Tool (SAT) on the MOM website to assess if their EP candidates will meet the new salary criteria. The SAT will be updated by Nov 2016.

15 July 2016
A generational mind-set to servicing family weath

"Planning for the future requires a sense of the past. Now, more than ever, it also needs expert knowledge of the constantly-changing regulations."

Read Mr Shanker Iyer's full article for Hubbis here.

5 July 2016
Singapore's 60% PIC Cash Payout Scheme Ends on 31 July 2016

As of 1 August 2016, cash payout conversion rate for qualifying expenditure incurred will be reduced from 60% to 40%. 

Therefore, companies still wishing to take advantage of the higher cash payout should take immediate action. 

Click here for more details.

20 June 2016
Singapore Joins Inclusive Framework for Implementing Measures against BEPS

Singapore will work with other participating jurisdictions to ensure the consistent implementation of measures under the BEPS Project and a level playing field across jurisdictions. 

Singapore supports the key principle underlying the BEPS Project, namely that profits should be taxed where the real economic activities generating the profits are performed and where value is created. 

Click here for more details.

2 June 2016
Additional Singapore Work Pass Criteria

Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has recently refined the work pass application process with the introduction of additional 'company-related' criteria.

Click here for more details.

23 May 2016
Carrying out a Project in Singapore

Executing projects abroad bear a substantial number of potentially serious risks. This alert reviews this matter from a Singapore perspective.

Click here for more details.

15 April 2016
A Spirit of Partnership

"An expansionary tax stance and measures to transform industry through automation and innovation are key elements of Singapore's 2016 Budget" - Mr Shanker Iyer for ACCA.

 

Click here for more details.

15 March 2016
 Public Consultation on Changes to Singapore Income Tax Act on the Common Reporting Standard (CRS)

Singapore's Ministry of Finance is conducting a public consultation on Singapore's approach to CRS.

 

Click here for more details.

2 March 2016
Singapore Income Tax Implications of the Adoption of FRS 115

On 12 October 2015, IRAS published a consultation paper (Income Tax Implications Arising from the Adoption of Financial Reporting Standard 115 – Revenue from Contracts with Customers) to set out the guidance on IRAS’ proposed position on the income tax implications arising from the adoption of FRS 115 and to seek for public comments on the paper with a closing date of submission of 11 November 2015. 

 

Click here for more details.

4 February 2016
Tax Guidance on Court-free Amalgamation in Hong Kong Issued by IRD

Court free amalgamation was introduced by the new Companies Ordinance (Cap. 622) on 3rd March 2014. This document aims to provide tax guidance on court-free amalgamation in Hong Kong issued by IRD.

Click here for more details.

13 January 2016
6 Things You Should Know About Singapore Payroll

Singapore payroll is relatively straightforward, but there are pitfalls to be avoided. This alert highlights 6 things you should know about Singapore payroll. 

Click here for more details.

16 December 2015
IRAS e-Tax Guides - November 2015

Revised Guides:

GST: Guide for Motor Vehicle Traders (2nd edition)

20 Nov 2015

A new paragraph was inserted to explain that if a taxpayer sells a new vehicle as a replacement vehicle under the Early Turnover Scheme (ETS), the value of COE of the new replacement vehicle is the sum of the discounted prevailing quota premium (PQP) payable and the COE rebate (if any) of the existing vehicle.

Click here for more details.

Income Tax Treatment of Real Estate Investment Trusts (4th edition)

3 Nov 2015

Amendments were made to remove the conditions that the trustee is not allowed to distribute any gain from disposal of immovable properties or shares until the CIT agrees on the nature and taxability of the gain and that for the purpose of applying for tax transparency treatment, the trustee and manager are required to jointly undertake not to distribute any gain arising from the disposal of any immovable properties or shares until the CIT agrees on the nature of the gain.

Click here for more details. 

To download this alert, please click here.

11 December 2015
Singapore Regulator Gets Tough on Late Filing

Singapore’s Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (‘ACRA’) has recently announced substantially increased penalties for AGM and Annual Return breaches by Singapore companies effective 1 Dec 2015.

New enforcement powers will also be introduced in 2016 whereby directors or company secretaries could face actions such as disqualification and debarment for non-compliance.

Click here for more details.

18 September 2015
Singapore Transfer Pricing 

For financial year 2014, required Transfer Pricing documentation should be completed by 30 November 2015. 

This guide gives you a background on Singapore's Transfer Pricing regime, basic concepts, documentation, examples of transactions and also various penalties that might be incurred due to non-compliance. 

Click here for more details.

23 July 2015 
Labuan IBFC GIFT Programme and Singapore Global Trader Programme

Published in June 2015's edition of Offshore Investment, Mr Shanker Iyer discussed the Labuan IBFC GIFT Programme and Singapore Global Trader Programme. 

 

Click here for more details.

14 July 2015
New Singapore Audit Exemption: Fewer companies require audit

As part of the first batch of amendments to the Singapore Companies Act, a significant number of companies that previously required an audit will no longer do so.

The changes take effect for financial periods starting on or after 1 July 2015.

Click here for more details.

12 June 2015
New AML Guidelines for Singapore Fund Managers

To keep Singapore in line with best practices and the latest recommendations of FATF, MAS has issued revised notices to financial institutions, including SFA04-N02 for fund managers

Click here for more details.

12 June 2015
Clarifications on GST on Fund Management Fees

MAS issued FDD Cir 02/2015 to clarify the GST treatment of fund management fees charged to funds, particularly whether  fund managers should apply a 0% or 7% charge. 

Click here for more details.

12 June 2015
Extension of Enhanced Tier Fund Tax Incentive Scheme

MAS issued FDD Cir 05/2015 which extends the scheme to SPVS under fund structures (allowing fund managers to meet the requirements on a consolidated basis).

Click here for more details.

21 May 2015
Obtaining a Tax Residency Certificate in Singapore 

A Singapore Tax Residency Certificate (“COR”) allows taxpayers to enjoy the benefits under the DTAs that Singapore has concluded with other treaty countries. Taxpayers must be able to demonstrate to the Singapore tax authorities, if required, that various conditions have been met in order to obtain the COR. Read on to find out more about the conditions and benefits of obtaining a COR. 

Click here for more details.

Labuan GIFT Programme vs. Singapore Global Trader Programme

In 2011, the Global Incentives for Trading (GIFT) programme was launched to support Malaysia's aim of becoming an international commodities trading hub. Shanker Iyer compares the key benefits and requirements of the GIFT programme with its Singaporean counterpart.

Read the article here.

30 April 2015
Regulation of Corporate Service Providers in Singapore

From 15th May 2015, Singapore companies providing corporate secretarial services will be regulated, and will have to comply with various regulations (including those covering anti-money laundering). 

Click here for more details.

14 April 2015

Budgeting for the Future

Singapore's budget 2015 aims to build future growth and strengthen social security. 

(Shanker Iyer’s article in the April issue of ACCA’s Magazine for Finance Professionals.)

Click here for more details.

9 Feb 2015

Moving your Company's operations and executives from Hong Kong to Singapore: Pros and Cons

Click here for more details.

25 Nov 2014

Introduction to International Tax Planning

Structuring of cross border business/ transaction in the most tax efficient manner.

Click here for more details.

7 Nov 2014

Singapore vs Hong Kong - 
A Jurisdiction Analysis

Click here for more details.

3 Nov 2014

The Employment Pass Landscape In Singapore

Click here for more details.

31 Oct 2014

Singapore - UAE Tax Treaty

Click here for more details.

30 Oct 2014

Singapore Global Trader Programme

Click here for more details.

28 Oct 2014

Tax incentives for funds and managers

Singapore has a number of tax incentive schemes in place to encourage the development of the fund management industry. With the exception of the Offshore Fund Scheme (13CA) and the GST scheme, meeting the conditions for these schemes does not automatically entitle a fund or fund manager to the exemptions; MAS approval is required. When deciding whether to grant approval, MAS looks at projected growth of the company as well as the substance being brought by the company to Singapore.

If you require any further clarification, please contact Sunil Iyer on sunil@iyerpractice.com.

Click here for more details.

23 July 2014

“Trends to shape the development of family offices in Asia” feature article by Mr Shanker Iyer (page 62 of Hubbis’ inaugural publication - Asian Families & Their Wealth 2014)

While the growth of Asian family wealth over the last decade has created a huge opportunity for banks, wealth management organisations of all types and a host of professional services firms – the needs of these clients are often complex and unique.

Click here for more details.

21 July 2014

Singapore Jobs Bank Takes Effect 1 August 2014

From 1 August 2014, all employers (unless otherwise exempted) submitting Employment Pass (EP) applications are required to advertise their vacancies on the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) Jobs Bank prior to submitting the EP application.

Click here for more details.

7 July 2014

Guide to Singapore Trusts

Click here for more details.

15 May 2014

Labuan International Business Financial Centre - The Mid-Shore Jurisdiction

Click here for more details.

14 Apr 2014

A Budget for the Future

While Budget 2014 reflects the government’s ambitions for quality growth and an equitable society, Singapore must work to dispose of its deficit.

(Shanker Iyer’s article in the April issue of ACCA’s Magazine for Finance Professionals.)

Click here for more details.

1 Apr 2014

Amendments to the Singapore Employment Act now in force

The Employment Act (EA) is Singapore’s statute relating to labour and employment issues.  It lays down specific provisions regarding the basic terms and conditions of employment and the rights, duties and responsibilities of employers and employees.

From 1st April 2014 a number of changes have been made to the EA.  These amendments afford greater protection to employees.

Click here for more details.

28 Feb 2014

New XBRL Filing Requirements in Singapore

The Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) recently announced revised XBRL filing requirements for companies required to file their financial statements with ACRA. The revision includes expanding the taxonomy used for XBRL filing. ACRA’s stated objective is to improve the quality of financial statements by increasing the breadth and depth of financial data submitted to ACRA. The revised filing requirements take effect on 3 March 2014.

Click here for more details.

25 Feb 2014

Singapore Budget 2014

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance delivered the Budget Speech for Financial Year 2014 on Friday 21st February.

Click here for more details.

13 Feb 2014

Tax Tips - Have You Made Any Payments To Non-Residents?

Under the Singapore Income Tax Act, if a Singapore business makes certain payments (or incurs liabilities) to non-residents, there is a requirement to withhold taxes at the applicable rates.

Click here for more details.

3 Dec 2013

Changes in the taxation of accommodation benefits provided to employees

Effective 1 January 2014 (Year of Assessment 2015), the taxation of accommodation benefits provided to employees will change. The changes will significantly affect employees who stay in either a place of residence or in a serviced apartment provided by the employer.

Click here for more details.

27 Nov 2013

Establishing inbound family offices in Singapore

At the recent STEP Asia 2013 conference, Shanker Iyer spoke on the tax, regulatory and immigration considerations around establishing inbound family offices into Singapore.

If you require any further clarification, please contact Shanker Iyer on shanker@iyerpractice.com.

Click here for more details.

10 Sep 2013

Singapore tightens rules on employment passes

On 23 September 2013 the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) announced new rules, the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF), which require employers to consider hiring Singapore citizens before hiring foreigners.

Click here for more details.