GST registration process
The GST registration process depends on the type of registration and constitution of your business. You are encouraged to familiarise yourself with the steps below and prepare all the required documents before starting the application process on mytax.iras.gov.sg.
Step 1: Determine the type of GST registration
You must determine if you are applying for compulsory or voluntary GST registration.
Please refer to our webpage on Do I need to register for GST for more details.
Step 2: Complete e-Learning course
The e-Learning course provides basic knowledge of the GST regime, allowing businesses to correctly identify the GST treatment on commonly encountered scenarios. It also explains the filing process of GST returns, provides compliance tips and provides an overview of taxpayer’s tax obligations. We encourage all businesses applying for GST registration to go through the course. For voluntary GST registrants, the company director, sole-proprietor, partner, trustee and/ or preparer of GST returns must complete the e-Learning course - "Overview of GST" - and pass the quiz within the course. However, this is not required if:
- The company director, sole-proprietor, partner or trustee of the business has experience in managing other existing GST-registered businesses;
- The person preparing your GST returns is an Accredited Tax Advisers (ATA) or Accredited Tax Practitioners (ATP); or
- The business is applying to be registered under the Overseas Vendor Simplified Pay-only Registration Regime.
Step 3: Submit your application for GST registration
Things to note:
- You must first be authorised in Corppass (for any of IRAS’ digital services e.g. e-Filing of Corporate Tax, e-Submission of Employment Income, etc.) by the business to access the GST registration digital service on mytax.iras.gov.sg.
- If none of your employees or third parties (e.g. your tax agent) has a Corppass account, please refer to our webpage on Corppass on how to register for Corppass.
- You will be required to attach supporting documents (PDF, 223KB) at the end of the application process. Please prepare the required documents in softcopy before starting the application process.
- If you are registering for GST on a voluntary basis, you are required to sign up for GIRO for your GST payment and refund. Please mail the completed original copy of the GIRO application form to 55 Newton Road Singapore 307987 after submitting your GST registration application online.
Step 4: Processing of GST registration application
We may request for additional information and supporting documents. Applications with incomplete information or insufficient supporting documents may be regarded as withdrawn.
Processing of GIRO forms
The GIRO application form submitted will be sent to your bank for approval. The approval process may take up to 3 weeks. We will inform you separately if the bank rejects your application.
Most banks will notify the applicants directly of the approval of their GIRO applications. IRAS will not send any letter for approved GIRO applications.
Step 5: Receive notification of effective date of registration
The letter will contain the following details:
- Your GST registration number
This is the number that you must print on your invoices, credit notes and receipts; and
- Your effective date of GST registration
This is the date when you must start charging and collecting GST on your taxable supplies. You must not charge or collect GST before the effective date of your GST registration.
You may also view a copy of the notification letter by logging in to mytax.iras.gov.sg (select “Notices/Letters”)
If you are late in your application for compulsory registration, your effective date of registration will be backdated to the date you ought to have been registered. This is determined based on when you were liable for GST registration.
If you applied for registration on a voluntary basis, you will be registered within 2 weeks from the date of the approval letter. The date of registration will not be backdated for the purpose of claiming input tax.
GST registration for overseas entities
An overseas entity is one that has neither a business establishment, fixed establishment nor usual place of residence in Singapore. If you are an overseas supplier or an overseas electronic marketplace operator registering for GST under the overseas vendor
registration regime, refer to this section instead.
If you are an overseas entity importing goods for supply in Singapore, you may adopt one of the following options:
- Option 1: You may import goods into Singapore and supply them in your business name. If your taxable supplies in Singapore exceed the $1 million threshold, GST registration is compulsory. You may refer to our webpage to find out whether you need to
register for GST. Otherwise, you may consider registering for GST voluntarily to claim GST paid on imports (subject to the input tax claiming conditions), if you are able to fulfill the responsibilities of a GST-registered business.
If you (as an overseas entity) are registering for GST, you must appoint a local agent in Singapore, known as a Section 33(1) agent, who will act on your behalf for all your GST matters. This agent is responsible for the accounting and payment of GST.
Please follow the GST registration process to apply for GST registration. In addition, you need to provide a letter to appoint a local agent (refer to last page of Document Checklist (PDF, 903KB)).
- Option 2: You may appoint a GST-registered Singapore agent who will import and supply goods on your behalf. This agent, known as a Section 33(2) agent, is responsible for the imported goods as if the agent is the principal. The agent will import goods into Singapore in its name and claim the GST paid on imports. Subsequent supplies of the goods imported will be treated as its own taxable supplies. The agent must account for GST on these supplies. You do not need to register for GST.
For overseas suppliers and overseas electronic marketplaces registering for GST under the overseas vendor registration regime
If you are an overseas supplier or overseas electronic marketplace operator registering
for GST under the overseas vendor registration (OVR) pay-only regime, please submit an application using the OVR form.
While you do not need to appoint a local agent to handle your tax matters in Singapore, you may be required to provide a security deposit if you are registering for GST on a voluntary basis.
GST registration for joint ventures
A joint venture (JV) is a business arrangement where two or more parties (members) come together to carry out certain activities jointly.
Registered with ACRA
If registered with ACRA, a JV is a legal entity and can be registered for GST.
Not registered with ACRA
If not registered with ACRA, a JV can only be registered for GST if all the following conditions are fulfilled:
- The JV is a distinct, organised entity with documentary evidence governing the constitution, objects, rules and activities. Documentary evidence includes partnership agreements, JV contracts, deeds, and letters of undertaking among others;
- The members are carrying on a business in common under the JV;
- The JV is in the business of making taxable supplies;
- Each member is participating in the business carried on by the JV; and
- One member is nominated and authorised by the others as the representative member to fulfil the administrative requirements of filing and payment of GST as well as other GST obligations for and on behalf of the JV.
The same rules on GST registration for partnerships apply to JVs. To find out if your JV must register for GST, please refer to our webpage on Do I need to register for GST .
Appointing a local agent for non-resident JV members
A duly completed letter has to be submitted to appoint a local agent (refer to last page of Document Checklist (PDF, 903KB).
I received a letter informing me that a security deposit must be provided for GST registration. Why do I need to provide a security deposit?
You may be required to provide a security deposit when registering for GST if at least 1 of the directors or partners of the business:
- Has outstanding income tax/ penalties; or
- Has been/ is a director/ partner/ sole proprietor of another business which has outstanding tax/ penalties/ returns.
However, we are precluded under the official secrecy laws from disclosing the identity of person(s) with outstanding tax matters with IRAS.
A security deposit may also be imposed for any other reason that the Comptroller deems fit. The security deposit must be in the form of a banker's guarantee or insurance bond. We may waive the requirement of the security deposit if the outstanding issues with IRAS are resolved.