Tax Alert 

KPMG's Tax Alert examines and discusses the recent tax developments in Singapore and the implications thereof.
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  • April 2016 - Issue 14 (PDF, 279KB) New
    There's still value in broad-based approach
    In his Budget 2016 statement, Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat said that a targeted approach to supporting businesses will be the preferred way going forward. At the same time, Mr Heng also announced that the broad-based Productivity and Innovation Credit (PIC) scheme will be discontinued after the year of assessment 2018.

    Rightly or wrongly, there may be a perception on the ground that a broad-based approach costs large sums of money and could be prone to abuse. Some have also claimed that productivity has not really improved despite the heavy investments in PIC.

  • April 2016 - Issue 13 (PDF, 256KB) New
    Stronger Links between Australian Taxation Office and Foreign Investment Review Board Announced
    Laying the foundation in Singapore's continued push for economic transformation, this year's Budget stayed on the steady course of steering the country towards value creation.

    From investing in the workforce to growing Singapore enterprises, no effort was spared in the drive for improved productivity and innovation under various measures announced by Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat.

  • March
  • March 2016 - Issue 12 (PDF, 223KB)
    Budget: A wish list for Singapore businesses
    Globally, the economy is slowing, oil and commodity prices are volatile and currencies are fluctuating. At home, we have manpower constraints, rising costs and relentless competition from multinational companies (MNCs). As these pressures increase, how do we create Singapore-owned enterprises that can adapt to the changing expectations of customers and stakeholders?

    In KPMG’s pre-Budget 2016 poll of 106 companies comprising small and medium enterprises (SMEs), large Singapore companies and foreign MNCs, almost half the respondents were in favour of more government schemes to promote Singaporean owned businesses. Traditionally, MNCs have driven economic growth in Singapore but, in the longer term, local brands will need increased support to promote the perception of “Made in Singapore” as high-tech, high-quality and high-value, both locally and globally. Here’s how the Government can help make this happen with Budget 2016.

  • March 2016 - Issue 11 (PDF, 300KB)
    Tax tweaks that help SMEs expand abroad
    Internationalisation is a way of life for Singapore companies looking to create value by expanding beyond the confines of the limited domestic market.

    Companies are often attracted to the lucrative overseas markets, but may be hesitant about treading unchartered waters, particularly when it comes to their duty to tax authorities.

  • March 2016 - Issue 10 (PDF, 202KB)
    Growing Singapore's biomedical R&D
    Singapore has a come a long way in building a vibrant research and development (R&D) landscape for the biomedical sector. In the last 15 years, we have successfully grown the nation's biomedical industry by attracting the world's leading biomedical companies and researchers into Singapore.

    This has led to an increase in public-private partnerships where multinational pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies and local institutions have partnered in ground-breaking R&D projects. Domestically, A*Star has also overseen the steady growth of local biomedical research institutes and the nurturing of our next generation of scientists.

  • March 2016 - Issue 9 (PDF, 421KB)
    Boosting value creation through Budget 2016
    Finding ways to help Singapore transit from a value-adding to a value-creating economy will be one of the key focus areas of the Committee on the Future Economy chaired by Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat.

    For some, value creation may seem like a tall order or even an abstract concept. After all, despite the recent focus on improving productivity, results have hardly been satisfactory even with the slew of government incentives. Value creation is more than just improving productivity or quality of existing products or services. It requires businesses to come up with innovative ideas or reinvent business operations to differentiate themselves from the competitors.

  • March 2016 - Issue 8 (PDF, 102KB)
    The PATH Act and FIRPTA Tax
    On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (the "PATH Act") into law.

    Among others, these provisions make it easier for real estate investment trusts (REITs) to comply with certain REIT qualification requirements and limit the application of the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA) to non-US investors. The Act also provided non-US investors with more opportunities to invest in US real estate without being subject to US tax and withholding.

  • February
  • February 2016 - Issue 7 (PDF, 1.3MB)
    Stronger Links between Australian Taxation Office and Foreign Investment Review Board Announced
    The Treasurer of the Commonwealth of Australia announced on 22 February 2016 that new requirements will be imposed on foreign investment applications to ensure compliance with Australian tax laws. This follows the overhaul of the foreign investment laws implemented at the end of last year. The Treasurer has stated that the new requirements will add to the ‘already strengthened’ framework.

  • February 2016 - Issue 6 (PDF, 91KB)
    Income Tax Implications Arising from the Adoption of FRS 115 Revenue from Contracts with Customers
    In this issue of Tax Alert, we bring to you the income tax implications which may arise with the introduction of the accounting standard FRS 115 Revenue from Contracts with Customers.

    For Singapore income tax purposes, an income is subject to tax if it is sourced in Singapore (i.e. it is derived from or accrued in Singapore), or if foreign-sourced income is received or deemed to be received in Singapore, unless specifically exempted under the Singapore Income Tax Act.

  • February 2016 - Issue 5 (PDF, 231KB)
    In this issue, we will provide a summary of Good Services Tax (GST) updates impacting businesses in Singapore.
    Issue 05 | February 2016 In this issue, we will provide a summary of Goods and Services Tax (GST) updates impacting businesses in Singapore.

    It is common for an overseas company to enter into a contract with a Singapore GST-registered service provider, for services to be performed for companies in and outside Singapore. As services rendered for the direct benefit of a Singapore company are subject to GST, the overseas company may incur irrecoverable GST.

  • January