How to Report About your Business Activity Type

As a rule, people starting companies already know what they’ll be doing. The authorities want to know, too, so they ask every entrepreneur about it. Let’s figure out how to decide on the answer and what rules to follow.

How to communicate your business activity

During the incorporation, you will be asked to pick and submit an SSIC code – a number that identifies your future business entity as a restaurant or a wedding agency or a coffin maker. In other words, these codes indicate what your company does and in what field.

To pursue adequate policies, Singapore needs to know what businesses are present in the country. A system of SSIC codes simplifies communication between the companies and the authorities. With the help of SSIC codes, the state collects the aggregates data, analyzes it and identifies trends. SSIC codes also help to determine whether a company needs a license or not.

What you need to know when incorporating

Every entrepreneur needs to submit at least one SSIC code when incorporating a company. You can add a secondary one if you want but there can be no more than two. To find out which code suits you best, use Osome’s free SSIC code search tool.

If you are worried that the SSIC codes do not communicate your future occupation clearly enough, you may get more specific about your activity type when incorporating:

Be careful when choosing an SSIC code associated with licensed activities. Here’s a list of them:

  • 🛍 Retail
  • 🏗 Construction
  • 🧖‍Spa
  • 🚢Shipping
  • 🎉Event management
  • 🏡Real estate
  • 📚Publishing
  • 🎓Private education
    (including kindergartens and child care centers)
  • 👨‍💻Human resources
  • 🏝Travel
  • 🍜Food&Beverage
  • 📦Trading (import&export of goods)
  • 🚑Healthcare

If you expect to work in either of these industries, you must pick the appropriate SSIC code during the incorporation. For example, a recruitment firm must choose the SSIC code “78104 – Employment agencies” to receive the Employment Agency license from the Ministry of Manpower.

What you need to know when operating

Luckily, the codes you choose when incorporating do not determine what your company will be doing. You can ask your company secretary to change your SSIC codes at any time.

But the best part is that you are not limited by the SSIC codes you choose. Your company is free to do any business, even if it’s not related to your declared activities. Feel free to participate in whatever is legal! Just make sure you have all the licenses and permits you need.

Next steps

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