Types of Payment & the Applicable Withholding Tax Rates

 

A person must withhold tax when certain types of payments (e.g. interest, royalty, services etc.) are made to non-resident persons. The rate of withholding tax depends on the nature of payment.

Withholding Tax Rates

Nature of IncomeTax Rate
Interest, commission, fee or other payment in connection with any loan or indebtedness15% 1
Royalty or other lump sum payments for the use of moveable properties10% 1 2
Payment for the use of or the right to use scientific, technical, industrial or commercial knowledge or information10% 1 2
Rent or other payments for the use of moveable properties15% 1
 

Technical assistance and service fees

Prevailing Corporate

Tax rate 

Management fees 

 

Prevailing Corporate

Tax rate 

Payment to Non-Resident Professional/Foreign Firms (Unincorporated)15% on gross income or prevailing non-resident individual rate on net income
Payment to Non-Resident Public Entertainer 10% on gross income (till 31 Mar 2020)
Payment to Non-Resident Director 22% (20% prior to Year 2016) 
Commission/Payment to Non-Resident International Market Agent3%
Time, voyage and bareboat charter fees for charter of aircraftsApplicable aircraft charter rates
Time, voyage and bareboat charter fees for the charter of shipsNil
Proceeds from sale of any real property by a non-resident property trader15%
Distribution of taxable income made by REIT to unitholder who is a non-resident (other than an individual)10% 4

 

1These withholding tax rates apply when the income is derived by the non-resident person through operations carried on outside Singapore. They are to be applied on the gross payment. The resulting tax payable is a final tax. The following tax rates apply on gross payments when operations are carried out in Singapore:

  • Non-resident person (other than individuals): Prevailing corporate tax rate

  • Non-resident individuals: 22% (20% for period of engagement prior to 1 Jan 2016)

2The reduced withholding tax rate of 10% applies to payments due and payable on or after 1 Jan 2005.

3Withholding tax is based on the prevailing corporate tax rate for the year when the services were provided (period of payment), even if payment to the non-resident is made in a different year. For example, if the service was provided in Dec 2008 but payment was made in 2009, the prevailing corporate corporate tax is that for 2008 (Year of Assessment 2009), which is 18%.
For payments made to non-resident individuals, tax is to be withheld at 20% (from 1 Jan 2016, the rate will be increased to 22%) on the gross payment.

4 The reduced withholding tax rate of 10% applies to distributions made during the period from 18 Feb 2005 to 31 Mar 2020 (Budget 2005 and Budget 2015 refer). From 16 Feb 2007, withholding tax does not apply to any distribution made by the trustee of the REIT where tax has already been paid, on the income from which the distribution is made, by the trustee of the trust (Income Tax (Amendment) Act 2007 refers).

If tax has been deducted in error at the prevailing corporate tax rate from the distributions made to nominees whose beneficiaries are any of the persons listed below, the Comptroller will refund the tax over-deducted to the trustee of REIT directly on a quarterly basis. The beneficiaries^ may be any of the following:

  • qualifying individual;
  • qualifying non-resident non-individual;
  • charity registered under the Charities Act (Cap. 37) or established by any written law;
  • town council;
  • statutory board;
  • co-operative society registered under the Co-operative Societies Act (Cap. 62); or
  • trade union registered under the Trade Unions Act (Cap. 333).

^ Do not include a person acting in the capacity of a trustee. 

The trustee,in turn will refund the amount to the nominees who will then refund it to the beneficiaries. For this purpose, the trustee is required to send its request for refund with all the original subsidiary income tax certificates on a consolidated basis. Please send your request to:

Revenue & Payment Management Branch
Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore
55 Newton Road
Revenue House
Singapore 307987

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