Updated: Mar 17
Some 7,000 multinational corporations (MNCs) operate out of Singapore, and of these, 46% run their Asia-Pacific Headquarters from here.
Other than Singapore’s top-notch education and trained workforce we discussed in our previous blog post, there must be something more attracting these companies.
Today we’ll look at some of the factors making it easy to do business in Singapore.
Intellectual Property (IP) Rights
If rampant and blatant disregard for Intellectual Property (IP) in other Asian countries is something you worry about, Singapore is your solution.
Singapore is ranked second in the world and top in Asia for IP protection in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2019, so you can be sure that Singapore has adequate IP laws that are respected and adhered to.
Singapore’s strict enforcement of its laws is one reason why its IP protection is also strong. Corruption is low since civil servants are usually sufficiently compensated, and corruption is a crime that comes with severe punishment. Lengthy jail sentences and large fines serve as a powerful deterrent.
As a result, Singapore ranks fourth in Transparency International's 2019 Corruption Perceptions Index and is the only Asian country in the Top 10.
A Transportation Hub: Your Gateway to Asia
Getting raw materials into Singapore, and finished goods out of Singapore, will be the least of your concerns. Being the world’s largest transhipment hub, Singapore is connected to 600 ports in more than 120 countries.
The port is world-class, too. Singapore’s port has been recognized as Best Container Terminal - Asia for the 29th time by the Asian Freight, Logistics & Supply Chain Awards (AFLAS).
Other than transporting goods, situating some key talents from home -- to qualify and manage suppliers, for example -- would certainly be part of your strategy for successful outsourcing.
The Singapore Changi Airport, named the World’s Best Airport for the 7th continuous year by Skytrax, is also a major hub.
Currently, more than 100 airlines fly out of Changi to 380 cities in about 100 countries. The airport has direct connections to 19 cities in Europe, and plans are in place to further improve its connectivity to North America, Europe, and its surrounding region.
This means frequent travel between your home country and Singapore will be a breeze.
No Disruptions from Typhoon, Tsunami, or Earthquake
Besides the high efficiency of Singapore’s transportation hubs, you can be assured that your logistics will not get held back by disruptive weather events like typhoons.
Thanks to its geographical location, Singapore is blessed with uniform temperature and pressure, so the climate is generally mild.
Furthermore, Singapore does not sit in the Pacific Ring of Fire, and is thus spared from serious earthquakes that can cause lengthy disruptions and devastating damage.
Shielded by the Malaysian Peninsula, the island of Sumatra, and the Riau Islands, Singapore is also not vulnerable to Tsunamis, even if they do occur in the region.
Access to Visa for Relocating Key Talents
Another reason to choose Singapore is its policy on foreign talents. Being a small country dependent on trade, its government is not one to practice protectionism.
While it wants companies to recruit locally whenever they can, the government acknowledges that Singaporeans are not equipped or inclined to do all jobs. For some job functions, foreign talents are needed to keep the economy going and to create enough jobs for Singaporeans.
Employers can bring in foreign talents with one caveat: they must demonstrate that they have considered local jobseekers fairly. The number of foreign workers (not professionals, managers, and executives) is also subject to a Dependency Ratio Ceiling -- an allowable ratio of foreign to local workers employed in a company.
Skilled foreign employees can relocate their spouse and family through long term visit passes. In another post, we talk more about life in Singapore for relocated families.
Given all the business-friendly factors we discussed above, it is no wonder Singapore has been attracting large amounts of foreign investments from MNCs -- and it is continuing to do this despite the end-2017 US corporate income tax reforms.
If you are looking to join these MNCs in outsourcing or expanding your business in Singapore, we can help you put your best foot forward. Go ahead and get in touch with us here.