Singapore Banking System

Share this postShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedInEmail this to someone

It`s really impossible to run a business abroad without a current account in a certain country. Singapore has remained the best country for running a business in 2015. Like in 2014, Singapore ranks top position in rating on Business Operating, International trading and Contract Performance Security. Rich people open accounts in Singapore in increasing frequency. This poses a question: Why?

Singapore is a new world centre of private customer banking. This country boasts of an excellent state system: according to the Transparency International rating, the rate of corruption in Singapore is even lower than in Switzerland – almost flat. Besides, the country provides excellent conditions for money saving. It should also be noted that unlike Switzerland, Singapore doesn`t depend on the influence of the USA and EU as well as on their foreign policy towards the citizens of certain countries.

singapore banking system


Every banking system of the country has its peculiarities and Singapore is not an exception. The banking system includes central bank, a network of commercial banks and other monetary centre.

Monetary Authority of Singapore, or central bank and national authority of financial regulation estimates the risks and weak points related to the events in Singapore and world economy together with their consequences for reliability and steadiness of Singapore financial system. Financial stability report, aiming at maintaining the deeper concept among businessmen, analytics and public in questions related to the Singapore financial system, includes analyses and reports.

Singapore banks

The number of banks in Singapore is constantly growing, so it is difficult to define the exact number of financial establishments now. There are no state restrictions on bank account opening for non-resident countries. This question is more likely governed by an internal banking policy.

All Singapore bank activities are subject to licensing. All banks are divided into 3 types: commercial (banks with full range of services, wholesale and offshore banks), commercial and financial companies. You can find more about each bank type in a comparison chart of section “Singapore banking system”.

Three local banks are found among the top-10 biggest world commercial banks:

1) DBS (Development Bank of Singapore)

This bank ranks leading position in South-Eastern Asia in financial assets. DBS has above 200 branches running international banking operations. 500 Singapore dollars are charged for account opening. There aren`t any recurrent payments for maintenance. But the chief executive and business owner must meet with bank representatives.

2) OCBC (Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation)

This bank represents Asian Bank Corporation which actively cooperates with foreign investors. It offers simplified procedures of account opening and relatively low tax rates.

Bank deposit maintenance is 25 Singapore dollars per month and 30 dollars annually. Monthly payments are not necessary for accounts with average balance from 8000 dollars. Debit card with company logo is issued with the account.

3) UOB (United Overseas Bank)

This international banking corporation has branches in the countries of Asia-Pacific, Western Europe and North America. In Singapore, United Overseas Bank has a leading position in the field of loans, mortgages, as well as support for small and medium-sized businesses. The bank is a reliable partner for foreign companies seeking favorable offshore environment.

Opening an account

Company registration procedure in Singapore takes only 1-2 days, while the procedure of account opening may differ. On average the procedure of corporate account opening takes about 10-15 business days. The decision is made by the bank. OLIESERVE company collaborates with a number of banks in different jurisdictions. The choice of bank depends primarily on your business activity, projected turnover and permanent account balance. Besides, it`s important to consider the nationality of the company owner and countries, with which this company runs a business, as some banks are set against account opening for certain countries.

It`s much quicker and easier to open accounts in Private Banking, under the compulsive condition of compliance bank conditions.

Secrecy in banking

Singapore bankers keep the secrecy of investment inviolate. In May 2013 Singapore joined the Council of Europe Convention and OECD on mutual administrative assistance in taxation and declared about control strengthening with fiscal avoidance at the domestic level (particularly designation of fiscal avoidance to the predicate crime category, e.g. preceding money laundering and legitimization of income, obtained by criminal means). Due to this fact the problem of secrecy in Singapore banking was raised more often.

Despite the joining of the Convention and control strengthening with fiscal avoidance, Singapore remains politically independent from such supranational formations as EU, and its banking system is not under such pressure, as for instance, Switzerland’s banking system.

National Singapore legislation allows for information proving on international demand of tax data only on the mutual basis; besides, it strictly keeps the secrecy in banking. Article 47 of Singapore law on banking activity strongly restricts Singapore bank establishments and their employees in disclosing information about customers to any third parties (excluding court resolution about information disclosure). Violation of regulations on banking secrecy is penalized by significant fees, imprisonment and may lead to the loss of the banking license.


Singapore has one of the less corrupted economies with the strictest banking secrecy and banking system independent from the West.

OLIESERVE Company will be glad to help you in your choice of bank in compliance with your activities and your business goals.

Contact us for bank Account Opening:

+357 25 31 61 19
Skype Olie.Serve1