How to Set Up a Non-Profit Organization in Singapore

Published: May 2019

In this issue of ASEAN Briefing magazine, we discuss the options available to foreign nationals and entities for setting up a non-profit organization (NPO) in Singapore. We begin by introducing the various forms of NPOs in Singapore. We next focus on the process of registering or incorporating a Public Company Limited by Guarantee (PCLG), which is the most preferred form of NPO for overseas nationals or entities in Singapore. We finally discuss the specific tax obligations of NPOs and incentives that are on offer for them in Singapore.

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In this issue:

  • Forms of Non-Profit Entities in Singapore
  • How to set up a Public Company Limited by Guarantee
  • Tax Treatment of Non-Profit Organizations in Singapore

Singapore's rise as a world-class business destination in the heart of Asia has been phenomenal. Capitalizing on ASEAN's rapid economic development, the country has also firmly positioned itself as an optimal destination for foreign investors planning an expansion in Asia. But the island-nation's rise and economic prosperity has also led to one of the highest levels of income inequality among the developed economies of the world.

Singapore's growing socio-economic divide coupled with the needs of an aging population has, therefore, in recent times increased the demand for the services of non-profit organizations (NPOs).The growth of NPOs in the island nation has also been driven by increasing levels of corporate social responsibility initiatives and an express desire of giving back to the community among the affluent sections of the country's population.

In this issue of ASEAN Briefing magazine, we discuss the options available to foreign nationals and entities for setting up a NPO in Singapore. We begin by introducing the various forms of NPOs in Singapore. We next focus on the process of registering or incorporating a Public Company Limited by Guarantee (PCLG), which is the most preferred form of NPO for overseas nationals or entities in Singapore. We finally discuss the specific tax obligations of NPOs and incentives that are on offer for them in Singapore.


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