Singapore’s national regulator of business entities, Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) have introduced a number of legal changes and new legislation regarding how companies are required to file their annual returns, which will impact Corporate Service Providers (CSPs) in Singapore.
It is hoped to improve the entire annual returns filing process, namely the general filing requirements and the directions available for filing returns, as an operating or dormant company, as well as filing returns with or without holding an Annual General Meeting (AGM).
Below is an overview of the main alterations:
1. ACRA is due to make an announcement about the enhanced regulatory framework for CSPs and the implementation date from when this will take effect. These changes are regarding:
- The new ACRA (Amendment) Act 2014.
- ACRA Filing Agents & Qualified Individuals Regulations 2015.
- ACRA use of the Electronic Transaction System (Bizfile) Regulations 2015.
2. The new legislation will also impose terms & conditions on Filing Agents (“FAs”) and Qualified Individuals (“QIs”), and a number of sanctions for CSPs who breach these terms and conditions.
3. A number of terms and conditions will impose the Financial Action Task Force (“FATF”) recommendations on FAs, including the requirements to implement internal policies, procedures and controls in order to:
- Assist with the prevention of money laundering.
- Perform customer due diligence on all clients (including the establishment of beneficial owners).
- Perform on-going monitoring during the course of business relationships.
- Keep full records of all business relationships and transactions.
Eltoma Corporate Services has been approved as a Filling Agent in Singapore as per the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority Act.
The criterion for qualification is as follows:
- The entity must have a satisfactory history regarding previous compliance as a registered filing agent or as a registered qualified individual (where applicable).
- The entity should act in a manner which reflects commercial integrity, with no background of conducting professional misconduct, a breach of fiduciary duty or serious negligence, or contributed to or facilitated the commission of professional misconduct by another person.
- The entity must have both the ability and aptitude to suitably achieve the obligations of a registered filing agent and the terms and conditions of registration.
- It must abide by the national or general public interests for the entity to be registered as a registered filing agent.
New Regulations seem to be toughening requirements for CSPs in Singapore; however this will ultimately increase the quality of services provided, as a result of qualification requirements and therefore improving client’s assurance in Singapore.
Going forward, Eltoma can assist with all your Singapore company filing requirements, via the ACRA bizfile electronic system online.
Please email us at info@eltoma-global for any enquiries.
Or alternatively contact us to learn more about the corporate compliance requirements in Singapore.