For newly incorporated Singapore companies, full tax exemption will be granted on normal chargeable income of a qualifying company up to $100,000, for any of its first three consecutive years of assessment (YA) that fall within YA 2005 to YA 2009.
To qualify for the tax exemption for a relevant year under the new scheme, a company must:
o be a company incorporated in Singapore
o be a tax resident in Singapore for that year
o have no more than 20 shareholders throughout the basis period relating to that year; and
o have all shareholders who are individuals throughout the basis period relating to that year.
A Singapore Subsidiary of a foreign company does not qualify for this tax exemption since the shareholder is a foreign company and not an individual.
Any Singapore company that does not meet the qualifying conditions for any of its first three consecutive years falling within 2005 to 2009 may still be eligible for partial tax exemption.
The Singapore tax system is territorial. Income tax is levied on the net income of companies from sources within Singapore and on foreign source income if remitted into Singapore. Non-resident Singapore companies and businesses are taxed on the same basis.
The company income tax rate is currently 20%. There is no capital gains tax imposed in Singapore. Singapore does not levy a withholding tax on dividends. Interest, royalties or rental of equipment payments to non-residents are subject to a 15% withholding tax.
Income tax for foreign-sourced income is applicable only if the income is remitted into Singapore. A Singapore company can enjoy tax exemption from its foreign-sourced dividends, foreign branch profits, and foreign-sourced service income that is remitted into Singapore if the following conditions are met:
o The highest corporate tax rate (Headline tax rate) of the foreign country from which income is received from is at least 15% in the year the income is received; and
o The foreign income had been subjected to tax in the foreign country from which they were received
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