Normally object clause of memorandum of association of Singapore companies is kept very wide and it covers almost all legal businesses. However at the time of reservation of name, the Singapore Standard Industrial Classification (SSIC) code of the business activity has to be lodged with ACRA. A customised description of the activity is optional. This business activity/description is reflected on the business profile of the company.

Registrar of Companies (ACRA) relevance of SSIC code

ACRA may use this business activity code to determine whether a licence is required for a certain business activity and may refer it to the relevant authority for their approval prior to allowing it to be used by the company. For example companies using media and production related activities may be referred to MDA for their approval.

Income Tax authority (IRAS) relevance of SSIC code

IRAS also uses this SSIC Code to determine tax benefit applicability for the company. For example- 3 years tax incentives for the new startups is no longer available for investment holding companies and if the company has kept SSIC code of investment holding company, it will not be eligible for such incentives.

Annual declaration about correctness of SSIC code

Recently ACRA has also changed it annual return filing page w.r.t. business activity and now it has to be confirmed during annual return filing with ACRA if the business activity as reflected in ACRA records is correct and whether there has been any changes in same recently. This seems to be a part of government initiative to properly and correctly classify the information pertaining to various industries for proper policy and decision making.

Therefore it is absolutely necessary that the company’s business activity is correctly reflected in ACRA records at all times. This description of SSIC code can be changed anytime with ACRA using bizfile without payment of any fees.

Where to find list of all available SSIC codes?

Please click on ssic 2015 to download the complete list of SSIC codes.

Multiple business activities, which SSIC code to choose? ACRA only allows two SSIC codes.

A practical difficulty may be faced in cases where the company has multiple activities/revenue streams as ACRA only allows a maximum of two business activities to be listed on bizfile. In cases where company has more than two business activities, the two activities having maximum revenue shall be listed with ACRA.

Few useful SSIC codes to use are those containing NEC at the end, in case your business activity is not adequately defined by or fall under existing SSIC codes. For those of you who didn’t know, NEC stands for “Not Elsewhere Classified”

In case of any doubts, feel free to ask your queries in comments section below or contact a corporate services provider or fill in the contact form below and I will be able to advise you accordingly: