The revamp of the Companies Act demonstrates the government’s commitment to maintain Singapore’s status as a top Asian business hub and its goal to be a business friendly capital
Singapore (PRWEB) October 05, 2012
Companies in Singapore can expect improved and modernized regulations sometime next year as the government has announced that major changes to the country’s Companies Act are on the way.
According to a statement by Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Wednesday night, the Companies Act will receive 209 changes as a result of four years of review and public consultations by a special committee. This will be the largest number of changes to the Act since it was passed in 1967. A Bill containing the amended Companies Act will be drafted and put up for public consultation before its reading in Parliament in mid-2013.
The changes are expected to benefit companies, SMEs, retail investors, and company shareholders. The changes are designed to a) reduce regulatory requirements, b) minimize compliance costs, c) offer greater flexibility and d) encourage better corporate governance for companies.
In one of the accepted changes, an estimated 25,000 additional private SMEs will be exempted from statutory audit if they meet two out of three criteria (total annual revenue of no more than S$10 million, total gross assets of no more than S$10 million, and no more than 50 employees). Currently, firms can only be exempt from audit if they are exempt private companies with annual revenue of no more than S$5 million.
“The revamp of the Companies Act demonstrates the government’s commitment to maintain Singapore’s status as a top Asian business hub and its goal to be a business friendly capital,” said Ms. Jacqueline Low, Chief Operating Officer of Janus Corporate Solutions, a leading Singapore company registration services firm and the parent company of GuideMeSingapore. “The Act was legislated almost 50 years ago and a lot has changed over the years, including globalization and the rise of new technologies. It is only logical that the Act be modified to make it more relevant with the practices of governments and corporations today.”
“For example, one of the approved recommendations enables publicly-listed companies to issue non-voting shares and as well as multiple-vote shares. This is already legal and widely used in jurisdictions such as the United Kingdom and the United States, and the change will help companies because of the additional flexibility offered to potential investors,” she explained.
“The recent repeal of GST on investment-grade precious metals has already attracted several international commodities trading firms to Singapore. This is a vivid demonstration of the fact that any changes can quickly affect how the global business community perceives Singapore,” Ms. Low continued. “As the country’s overall legal infrastructure becomes even more efficient, multi-national companies and individual entrepreneurs alike will further benefit from setting up a company in Singapore.”
About Janus Corporate Solutions Pte Ltd
Janus Corporate Solutions Pte Ltd is a leading Singapore-based firm that provides comprehensive and cost-effective Singapore company registration, immigration visa, accounting and tax filing services to businesses and entrepreneurs worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.guidemesingapore.com