4 August 2020
Singapore

Introduction

Recognised for its political stability, sound financial regulations and pro-business policies, it is unsurprising that Singapore has established itself as one of the leading private banking and wealth management hubs in Asia. The Singapore government has further introduced various tax incentive schemes targeted towards funds managed by family offices, such as income tax exemptions on almost all investment gains. Consequently, Singapore has increasingly become the jurisdiction of choice for ultra-high net worth (“UHNW”) individuals and families to set up base to manage their assets and investments, specifically, by setting up a family office. This article gives a brief overview of setting up a single-family office (“SFO”) in Singapore and what SFOs have to offer.

新加坡因其稳定的政治环境,完善的金融法规和有利于商业运作的公共政策受到认可并成为亚洲领先的私人银行和财富管理中心之一。新加坡政府还针对家族办公室管理的基金推出了多项税收优惠计划,例如免征几乎所有投资收益的所得税等。有鉴于此,新加坡已逐渐成为超高净值人士和家庭设立资产管理和投资基地的首选法域,特别是采用在新加坡设立家族办公室的方式。本文概述了在新加坡设立单一家族办公室 (Single Family Office)(“单一家族办公室”)的基本法律要求和单一家族办公室提供的有关服务。

A. What is a Single-Family Office?
何为单一家族办公室?

An SFO typically refers to a legal entity that carries out the administration and management of assets and investments of UHNW individuals or families for the purposes of capital preservation, succession planning and managing investments. An illustration of a typical ownership structure¹ of an SFO is seen below:

单一家族办公室指的是对超高净值人士或家庭的资产和投资进行日常管理的法人实体,其主要目的旨在帮助超高净值人士或家庭进行资本保全、继承规划和投资管理。单一家族办公室的典型所有权架构¹如下:

B. SFO Regulatory Requirements in Singapore
单一家族办公室的具体新加坡法律法规要求

Although fund management companies in Singapore are generally required to be licensed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (“MAS”), the Securities and Futures Act (Cap 289), read together with the Financial Advisers Act (Cap 110), provides exemptions for SFOs engaging in fund management and financial advisory activities from licensing requirements. For instance, under the statutory exemptions, an SFO may be exempted from licensing requirements if it was structured as either (a) a corporation which manages funds for its related corporations, or (b) a corporation that provides financial advisory services to its related corporations.

In other words, SFOs performing such regulated activities will not need to be licensed by MAS. Furthermore, in the event that an SFO does not fall within the stipulated exemptions squarely, MAS has indicated its willingness to consider granting exemptions on a case by case basis. Typically, MAS will consider the following to be SFO arrangements:

虽然常规的新加坡基金管理公司均须事先获得新加坡金融管理局(“新加坡金管局”)发出的基金管理牌照,但是《新加坡证券和期货法》(第289章)以及《新加坡财务顾问法》(第110章)在符合条件的情况下,针对为从事资金管理和财务咨询服务的单一家族办公室给予了对应的牌照的豁免。例如,根据法定的豁免规定,若单一家族办公室是(a)为其关联公司提供基金管理服务的公司,或(b)为其关联公司提供财务咨询服务的公司,则可获得牌照豁免。换句话说,对于此类管理自己家族财富的单一家族办公室无需再向新加坡金管局申请有关对应的基金管理牌照。需要进一步澄清的是,如果单一家族办公室不属于现有类别牌照豁免范围的公司,那么新加坡金管局则表示可按个别情况具体审核后给予牌照豁免。通常,新加坡金管局会将以下架构视作为为典型的单一家族办公室:

  • where there is no common holding company, but the assets managed by the SFO are directly held by natural persons of a single-family;
    单一家族办公室和投资基金公司虽然没有共同的控股公司,但单一家族办公室管理的资产均由该单一家族的自然人直接持有;
  • where assets are held under a discretionary trust, the settlor of the trust and the beneficiaries are members of the same family;
    如果资产由全权信托持有,信托的委托人和受益人为同一家族成员;
  • where a family trust is set up for charitable purposes, the charitable trust is funded exclusively by settlor(s) from a single-family; and
    如果家族信托基金的设立是出于慈善的目的,慈善信托基金完全由单一家族的委托人资助;和
  • where non-family members such as key employees of the SFO are shareholders in the SFO for the purpose of alignment of economic interest and risk-sharing, the initial assets and additional injection of funds are funded exclusively by a single-family.
    为了协调经济利益和分担风险,单一家族办公室的股东存在有非家族成员(例如关键雇员)的情形时,初始资产及后续额外注入的资产完全由单一家族资助。

MAS may take between two to four months to review an application for licensing exemption, depending on the complexity of the arrangement, the quality of the information submitted and the responsiveness of the applicants.

取决于个案结构的复杂程度、递交信息的质量以及申请人对问题的答复速度等因素,新加坡金融管理局通常需2至4个月的时间来审核牌照豁免的申请。

C. Tax Schemes and Incentives in Singapore
新加坡政府指定的税收优惠计划

Singapore has several tax incentive schemes under the Income Tax Act (Cap 134) (“ITA”) that are available for funds managed by family offices which allow for onshore and offshore family investment vehicles to be exempted from income tax on certain designated investments:

根据《新加坡所得税法》(第134章),新加坡有几项税收优惠计划可适用于由在新加坡设立的家族办公室管理的对应基金。具体而言,该优惠计划允许家族投资机构(新加坡境内或境外)的某些特定投资的收益享受新加坡免税待遇:

  1. Offshore Fund Tax Exemption Scheme (Section 13CA of ITA);
    离岸基金税收豁免计划(《新加坡所得税法》第13CA条);
  2. Onshore Fund Tax Exemption Scheme (Section13R of ITA); and
    在岸基金税收豁免计划 (《新加坡所得税法》第13R条);和
  3. Enhanced Tier Fund Tax Exemption Scheme (Section13X of ITA)
    特级基金税收豁免计划(《新加坡所得税法》第13X条)

This segment focuses on the tax incentive schemes for onshore funds. The key features and requirements of the schemes are as follows:

以下部份重点讨论在岸基金的税收优惠计划。该税收优惠计划的主要特点和要求如下:

Tax Incentive Schemes
对应优惠计划
Section 13R Schemes
13R条例(简称“13R计划”)
Section 13X Schemes
13X条例(简称“13X计划”)
Fund’s Residence(1)
投资基金公司的所在地
Singapore tax resident
新加坡税收居民
No restrictions
无特定要求
Assets under Management (AUM)
基金资产管理规模
No minimum sum at the point of application
在申请税收豁免当时并无最低数额的法定要求
Must have a minimum of SGD50 million at point of application
在申请税收豁免当时,基金资产管理规模必须为5,000万新币或者以上
Fund Expenditure
投资基金公司年度开支
At least S$200,000 local business spending in a year
每年在新加坡产生的商业费用支出不低于20万新币
At least SGD200,000 local business spending in a year.
每年在新加坡产生的商业费用支出不低于20万新币
Fund Administrator
基金管理
Singapore-based
基金管理者必须常驻新加坡
Singapore-based
基金管理者必须常驻新加坡
Shareholding / Investors
股权/投资者
Pursuant to Section 13R of the ITA, non-qualifying investors (i.e. Singapore non-individuals investing above a certain prescribed percentage in the fund) will be required to pay a financial penalty to IRAS
根据《新加坡所得税法》第13R条,不符合条件的投资者(即投资额超过13R基金的某个指定持股比例的新加坡非个人投资者)将会被新加坡税务局根据情况支付对应罚款。
No restrictions
无法定要求
Approval Requirement
审批要求
MAS approval required for tax exemption scheme to apply (no change of investment mandate after approval)
需要新加坡金管局的批准才能享受《新加坡所得税法》第13R条下的税务豁免计划(批准后不能更改投资授权)
MAS approval required for tax exemption scheme to apply (no change of investment mandate after approval)
需要新加坡金管局的批准才能享受《新加坡所得税法》第13X条下的税务豁免计划(批准后不能更改投资授权)
Reporting Requirement
财务汇报要求
Annual statements to investors
向投资人提供年度报告
Not required
无特定要求
Income Tax Filing
所得税申报
Must file annual tax returns to IRAS
须每年向税务局进行税务申报
Must file annual tax returns to IRAS
须每年向税务局进行税务申报
Annual Declaration to MAS
向新加坡金管局提交年度声明
Required
需要
Required
需要

(1) “Fund” in the table above refers to the investment vehicle(s) managed by an SFO.
上述表格中的“基金”是指由单一家族办公室管理的投资实体。

Sections 13R and 13X schemes also allow family members who join the family office as investment professionals to apply for an Employment Pass in Singapore
Note: one pass per s13R entity and three pass per s13X entity (subject to approval by relevant authorities).

13R和13X计划也允许以专业投资顾问身份加入家族办公室从事管理工作的家族成员申请新加坡的工作准证 EP (Employment Pass)
注:13R计划的单一家族办公室可以获得1个EP配额 ,13X计划的单一家族办公室可以获得3个EP配额 (须经有关当局批准) 。

All funds that qualify for any of the abovementioned tax incentive schemes as at 31 December 2024 may enjoy the tax exemption for the life of the fund (provided that the on-going operational conditions are met).

任何截至2024年12月31日符合上述税收优惠计划条件的基金将在基金存续期间享受免税待遇(前提是基金确实符合税收优惠计划的相关条件)。

Lastly, Singapore has over 100 Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreements available to family offices which allows certain types of income to be taxed less or even exempted.

最后,在新加坡设立家族办公室可以享受超过100多个的避免双重征税的扩国协定(Double Taxation Agreements),这使某些类型收入的税收可以获得减免甚至做到完全免税。

Our Observations
我们的观察

Singapore has long been an established financial and business hub and has a vibrant wealth management sector. As seen from the above, Singapore checks the boxes of what UHNW families consider to be essential when planning where to site their family offices. We believe that Singapore’s legal and tax landscape as well as its political stability would help further promote Singapore as an attractive destination for family offices serving wealthy families in the region.

新加坡长期以来一直是金融和商业中心并拥有蓬勃发展的财富管理行业。如本文所述,就超高净值家族在设立家族办公室时所会考量的具体因素而言,新加坡都已经提供了完美的对应政策。我们相信,新加坡的法律制度和税收政策以及其稳定的政治环境将有助于新加坡成为设立家族办公室的首选之地。

¹Ownership structure depends on the legal form of the holding/family office and various regulatory/operational considerations.
所有权架构取决于控股/家族办公室的法律形式以及各种监管/运营方面的规则考量。

If you have any questions or require any additional information, please feel free to reach out to Yap Lian Seng, Dr Qiu Yang or any director of ZICO Insights Law LLC.

如果您有任何疑问或需要任何更多的信息,请随时与叶麟盛律师,邱洋博士或任何其他智阔法律的董事联系。


This alert is for general information only and is not a substitute for legal advice.

本文章仅是一般信息且不应被替代为法律意见。