The total number of new business formations in Singapore in 2013 saw an 8.61% increase from the prior year, according to the latest quarterly Singapore Business Formation Statistics Report released by Janus Corporate Solutions.
The consistent and continuing improvement in new business incorporations affirms Singapore's robust and resilient economy despite international economic and political turmoil.
The statistics reveal that 14,500 new business entities were registered in Q4 2013. While the numbers show a slight dip from the previous quarter, that seasonal dip is consistent with the observed in previous years where business formation activities tend to slow down towards the end of a calendar year.
On a year-on-year basis, the quarter saw significant growth over the 13,351 formations recorded in Q4 2012. A year-on-year comparison shows that 2013 has been a consistently healthier year than 2012, with an average of 9% growths in total business formations observed in most quarters.
In keeping with previous quarters, private limited companies form the majority of business entity types with 8,359 formations, of which 83.89% were incorporated as exempt private limited companies (EPC).
The number of branch offices incorporated remains stable. The number reconfirms Singapore's repute as a business-friendly financial hub that is drawing in MNCs looking to establish a regional presence.
The Singapore government has long been praised for its pro-business regulations, and it is most evidently reflected in the ease of incorporating companies with a minimum paid-up capital of only S$1. This friendly policy has attracted many foreign and local entrepreneurs, and in turn has cultivated a thriving entrepreneurial spirit.
Furthermore, analysis by Janus reveals that about a quarter of new businesses incorporated between 2012 and 2013 had only foreign-based shareholders, which is one of the attractive features of the Singapore business environment where the government allows full foreign ownership of companies.
"The proactive efforts by the Singapore government to aid and support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have greatly encouraged younger entrepreneurs to realize their business ideas, and helped existing SMEs build sustainability," points out Jacqueline Low, Chief Operating Officer of Janus Corporate Solutions.
Low adds that the increasing number of grants and schemes aimed at boosting productivity and innovation, along with help centres to be set up in 2014, has granted small business the access to a wealth of resources.
"Such a reassuring business environment is one of the key factors that contribute to the country's long-standing economic resilience," says Low.