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June 19, 2023

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How to Obtain a Tax Identification Number in Singapore (TIN)

5 min read

Tax Identification Numbers

A Tax Identification Number (TIN) – also known as a Unique Entity Number (UEN) in Singapore – is a unique identification number assigned to businesses and individuals. Obtaining a TIN is necessary for all businesses operating in Singapore. TINs serve as proof of a business’s legal existence and are used to track tax payments and tax obligations. TINs are used in banking, for transactions made with the government, and when applying for various tax schemes, licenses, and permits.

In Singapore, TIN/UENs are issued by the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). To obtain a TIN, businesses must register their company with ACRA. This can be done online through the BizFile+ portal, or by physically filing at the ACRA Customer Service Centre. Once a company is registered, a TIN will be issued to the business. This TIN can then be found on the company’s Business Profile page on the BizFile+ portal.

For individuals, the process of obtaining a TIN is slightly different. Individuals must first register for a SingPass account. Once this account is set up, individuals can then apply for a TIN through the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) website.

Additional Tax Requirements

Businesses and individuals in Singapore with annual taxable sales exceeding SGD 1 million must also register for the Goods and Services Tax (GST). The GST is a value-added tax levied on the supply of goods and services in Singapore. Businesses must charge GST on all taxable sales, and GST returns need to be filed with the IRAS on a regular basis. The due dates for these returns are typically at the end of the month following the fiscal quarter. For example, most businesses are required to file a GTS for the first quarter by the end of April of that year.

Businesses that fail to file a TIN or fail to comply with tax regulations and filing requirements like the GST are subject to fines, penalties, and other legal consequences. It’s important for businesses and individuals to stay up to date with their tax obligations and that they remain in compliance with relevant regulations.

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In summary:

  • A tax identification number, or TIN, is a unique identification number essential for businesses and individuals operating in Singapore. (In Singapore the TIN is also known as a Unique Entity Number, or UEN).
  • A TIN allows businesses to register for various tax schemes, apply for licenses and permits, and engage in various business transactions.
  • Businesses operating in Singapore must also register for the Goods and Service Tax, or GST.
  • Obtaining a TIN, registering for the GTS, and complying with tax regulations is essential for businesses and individuals to avoid fines, penalties, and other consequences.

Acquiring a TIN and registering for the GST are basic legal requirements for businesses operating in Singapore, so it is important to remember to fulfil them. Fortunately, these two aspects of getting started in Singapore are easy to accomplish. Registering for a TIN is a simple process that can be accomplished entirely online, and the IRAS provides a wealth of useful resources on their website regarding GST that can help new businesses to better understand their obligations.

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