Tariffs and regulations

Tariffs and duty rates are constantly revised and are subject to change without notice. Austrade strongly recommends you reconfirm these prior to selling to Singapore.

The Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) is a wide-ranging and comprehensive agreement, under which import tariffs on all goods originating in Australia and Singapore were eliminated. Under SAFTA, Australian investors and investments are treated on the same basis as Singapore businesses (national treatment), including in relation to the different areas of investment. Details of SAFTA benefits are provided in the Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement: A Business Guide.

The ASEAN-Australian-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZFTA) reduced or eliminated tariffs across one of the most economic regions that is home to 600 million people and a combined gross domestic product (GDP) of around US$2.2 trillion.

Austrade’s AANZFTA tariff finder, provides an easy reference for Australian exporters who want to know what the applicable tariff rate is for their products under the AANZFTA.

For detailed information on Singapore tariffs and regulations, please see the Singapore Customs website.

Tariffs and non-tariff barriers

Tariff

The country has adopted the eight-digit harmonised system (HS) code incorporating the ASEAN Harmonised Tariff Nomenclature to promote uniformity in the classification of goods and facilitate trade within ASEAN member countries. Find out more at the Singapore Customs website.

The Port of Singapore includes a duty-free zone where goods in transit may be stored, resorted or repacked without incurring duty.

A list of controlled imports into and exports out of Singapore is available.

The entry of a range of consumer manufactures may be subject to acceptance by different government statutory boards:

Electrical regulations are generally modelled on the British Standards specifications. Increasingly, IEC standards are adopted.

All goods imported into Singapore are regulated under the Customs Act, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Act and the Regulation of Imports and Exports Act. Imported goods are subject to GST and/or duty payment. A Customs permit is required to account for the import and tax payment of the goods. For more information on import procedures visit the Singapore Customs website.

Product certification, labelling and packaging

Labelling should indicate:

  • country of origin
  • packaging dimensions
  • name and address of manufacturer
  • composition
  • expiry dates.

Foodstuffs (including beverages) and drugs are subject to and must comply with specific detailed labelling requirements.

Specified metric sizes are mandatory for a number of prepacked consumer items, including:

  • butter
  • rice
  • white sugar
  • wheat flour
  • cooking salt.

All pre-packed food products for sale in Singapore must be labelled according to the general labelling requirements of the Singapore Food Regulations.

The labelling and claims for health supplements, cosmetics and medicines should comply with the guidelines set by the Health Sciences Authority.

Packing should be sturdy and guard against extreme heat and high humidity (frequently over 90 per cent) and possible brief periods of open storage. All wooden packaging and forest produce must be certified as being free from infestation by insects and fungi. Goods whose importation is restricted or dutiable, should not be packed in the same package or container as non-dutiable or unrestricted goods.

Methods of quoting and payment

Quotes should preferably be in US or Australian dollars and Cost, Insurance and Freight (CIF) (Incoterms 1990). Secured payment terms are initially recommended.

Suppliers not wishing to reveal the commission of local agents, should include such commission in the quotation.

Payment by letter of credit should indicate the appropriate Trade Registration Number.

Documentary requirements

It is recommended that you work with a freight forwarder for the import of goods into Singapore as documentary requirements differs for different products.

In addition, please note that the following supporting statements must also be supplied:

  • The person signing the certificate:
    • is authorised to issue on behalf of the manufacturer, producer or grower and, if appropriate, the supplier.
    • has the means of knowing the statement to be correct.
  • The goods are the produce of manufacturer of the country named.
  • The goods were, if applicable, grown or produced in and consigned from named country or countries.
  • If manufactured, not less than 25 per cent of the goods is the result of either labour or the use of materials originating in the named country or countries.

Public health requirements

The importation of the following must comply to Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) import requirements:

  • pets and laboratory animals
  • plants and plant products
  • meat and fish
  • fresh fruits and vegetables
  • eggs (fresh, salted, preserved or processed)
  • processed food
  • irradiated food
  • insects
  • animal feed
  • veterinary biologics and pathogens

Imports of controlled chemicals are subject to requirements as regulated by the National Environment Agency.

Censorship regulations

Printed matter, including advertising posters and catalogues and films are subject to inspection and approval by the Media Development Authority (MDA).

Insurance

Normal commercial practice.

Weights and measures

The metric system.