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Singapore is a high-tech, wealthy city-state located at the tip of the Malay Peninsula. Singapore’s geographic location lends itself as the gateway to markets in China and India, creating an attractive feature for international businesses looking for access into these Asian markets. According to Doingbusiness.org, Singapore ranks number 1 in ease of doing business in the East Asian and Pacific countries. Setting up a business in Singapore is simple and cost effective, and can take as little as a few days, allowing your business to be up and running in no time.
Singapore’s political stability is essential to foreign investment, and government agencies are involved with promoting economic growth by providing low tax rates and a variety of tax incentives. Despite these low tax rates, a wide range of tax compliance procedures must be proactively followed in order to operate lawfully in Singapore.
As an English speaking nation with an educated workforce, Singapore’s stable government, excellent infrastructure, foreign investment incentives, and competitive tax rates create a favorable destination for businesses looking to expand internationally.
English is one of four recognized official languages of Singapore (the others being Malay, Mandarin and Tamil), but it is by far the most commonly used. Most business activities, including contracts, will be conducted in English. The “language barrier” for U.S. companies operating in Asian countries is nearly nonexistent.
Singapore is popular for foreign investors for good reasons. The nation offers a range of incentives to companies operating on the ground, including tax benefits for businesses in specific industry segments. Without major restrictions on foreign exchange, funds flow in and out of the country with relative freedom.
Singapore is a major trading hub with continually evolving opportunities. With easy access to key Asian markets, Singapore has cultivated attractive market opportunities many industries, including the medical, higher education, technological and manufacturing industries.
Singapore has a highly developed trade-oriented market economy, which has been ranked as the most open, least corrupt, and most business-friendly. Low tax rates and high GDP per capita are other factors responsible for Singapore’s very friendly business climate.
Now for those interested in starting a business in Singapore, it will be very helpful and advisable to undertake some research first and know just what people in Singapore want and need. Doing business in Singapore entails sufficient knowledge about the country; its laws, its culture, its existing establishments, and the overall business climate. Nothing kills a business faster than doing things based on assumption, rather than facts.
So if you are a foreigner already living in Singapore, or you are planning to settle down in that country soon, chances are you want to start your own business there. You have bright chances of success, but you will succeed only if you invest in the right businesses. So without wasting time, below are the top ten business opportunities in Singapore for foreign investors.
The Best Business Opportunity in Singapore
Food business is probably the best business to start not just in Singapore, but all over the world. This is because there is a universal need for food, and it is the most important basic need of man.
The Lion City is hailed as a food paradise. It is one destination in Southeast Asia teeming with outdoor food courts and hawker centers that appeal to locals and visitors from all walks of life. So if you are thinking about venturing into the top 10 small business opportunities in Singapore, notably food; then you are in for tough competition.
Now there are a lot of food business ideas you can choose to start but you need to be quite inventive, innovative and passionate enough to offer something that will appeal to Singaporeans and visitors. The food business lands in the top spot among favored businesses elsewhere in the world.
You may choose an untapped market like gourmet chocolates especially if you really want to choose food, which retains the top spot among other businesses in Singapore that may catch on quickly.
Best Small Business Investment Opportunities in Singapore for Foreigners in 2019
Although Singapore has very limited arable land, the country has relied heavily on agro-technology for agricultural production and consumption. But the demand for food and other agricultural products seem to be outweighing the supply with each passing day because there are very few players in the agriculture sector.
You are very likely to make huge profits from agriculture in Singapore provided you’re ready to bear the costs of the technology required for boosting production.
Singapore is aggressively promoting and developing its biotechnology industry. The government has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on infrastructure, fund research, development, and recruitment of top international scientists.
In addition, leading drug makers like GlaxoSmithKline and Pfizer have set up plants in Singapore. So, there are huge opportunities for investors in the biotechnology sector. However, breaking into this industry requires solid background knowledge and a huge capital.
Fast foods and snacks
Fast foods and snacks sell very well in Singapore. This means investors can really make lots of profit from businesses that sell snacks such as barbecue, pizza, and so on. This business requires little capital and no formal academic certifications. So, it’s one you can easy break into.
Transportation is one of the necessities that are almost indispensable. And this is why the demand for transport services is high almost everywhere. As a foreign investor in Singapore, you can start a transport business, the scope of which hinges on your capital. If you have little capital, start a taxi service that transports people within local routes. With bigger capital, you can start an inter-city or inter-state transport service.
The electronics industry is the largest in Singapore’s manufacturing sector, accounting for a whopping 48% of the total industrial output. This high production rate notwithstanding, there are huge opportunities for businesses that sell electronic products to consumers. With a little capital, you can focus on a narrow range of electronics, but this could be wider depending on your capital.
With increasing need by businesses to attract customers and sell their offers via the internet comes the booming demand for professionals and businesses that offer online marketing services. These services range from copywriting to search engine optimization. If you are a seasoned copywriter, or a website designer and developer, or a search engine optimization specialist, or a social media marketing expert, then huge opportunities are awaiting you in Singapore.
With the increase in number of individuals and businesses that have adopted blogging as a way of making money online comes the escalating demand for creative ghostwriters.
Blogging as a business thrives only when quality content is published consistently, a condition that many bloggers would never meet on their own. So, if you are very good with words and are a stickler for perfect grammar, you can make lots of money working as a ghostwriter for bloggers as well as handling other writing assignments.
Most Singaporeans are just too busy to handle their laundry themselves. So, they would rather pay to get this done for them. If you are looking to start a small-scale business in Singapore, consider this option. To start a laundry business, you need no more than a washing machine and a few other equipments such as pressing irons, dryers, and so on.
Automobiles and spare parts
Cars and other automobiles sell very well in Singapore. And foreigners can easily break into the business. But capital remains the main issue, as the business requires huge capital. However, if you are having little capital, you can start a business that sells auto spare parts instead. They sell well, too.
Because there are many businesses, both indigenous and foreign in Singapore, there is high demand for individuals that offer professional financial services such as accounting, auditing, and bookkeeping. If you have a solid background in any of these services, you can make a lot of money in Singapore by helping other businesses with your skills.
More Small Business Investment Opportunities in Singapore for Foreigners
- Thrift shop or vintage store – Singapore has lots of clothing stores, but your very own thrift shop or vintage clothing and accessories store can possibly stand out in one of the bustling neighborhoods.
- Home tutoring service – Heads of families in Singapore tend to arrange for home tutoring for their kids, making it a good business option. You can even choose to teach English language or accounting, as these two subjects are highly in demand.
- Eco-friendly products – Distributing eco-friendly products online such as light bulbs and recycled items may be a great business move. Just be sure to keep your site navigation-friendly and updated with fresh articles.
- Organic products like quality baby linen or gift packs – Quality conscious parents can be regular customers for this type of product offerings.
- E-books – A small business that caters to a favorite pastime, like reading, can thrive. Consider writing and selling your own e-book through the e-marketplace if you have skill and determination.
- Handmade jewelry – Can you string pretty beads and retail them? Then you can start a jewelry making business from home if you have the skill and passion for it.
- Elderly care services – In Singapore, there is a law that mandates children to take care of their elderly parents and indirectly, this law has created a demand for elderly home health care services. Providing quality care for seniors, like preparing meals, running errands or housekeeping, can be lucrative business, especially in households with busy working professionals. After all, no one would like to spend time in jail for neglecting their elderly ones.
- Fitness trainer – More and more people are realizing the importance of having a fit body. A fitness trainer can get his share of clients. Products that enhance health may likewise have huge demand.
- Cleaning services – Running a small business that provides residential upkeep can be a good business. Commercial establishments that need to keep their premises clean can also be regular clients. You can provide housecleaning services, office cleaning services, foreclosure housecleaning, roof cleaning, etc.
- Repair services – Individuals who need to have their appliances or furniture repaired can save costs. Hence, a repair service business can be a good business option. In any economy, whether good or bad, people will always have things to fix as fixing an item cost less than buying a brand new one.