Singapore is an island nation with an area that is only slightly larger than the 23 wards of Tokyo, with a population of about 5.6 million. Even so, all manner of industries are gathered there, including electronics, petrochemicals, environmental, ICT, pharmaceuticals and medical services, biotechnology, logistics, and finance and insurance. This has given the nation an extremely high degree of economic strength, evidenced by its per capita GDP of about USD 53,000, which is the 10th highest in the world (all figures are from 2016). In addition to its geographical advantages, Singapore also has a transparent legal system that is implemented consistently based on a national strategy, a highly competitive taxation system, and other advanced business infrastructure. As such, it now holds a firm position as the headquarters of Asia. Singapore’s importance for Japanese companies is also growing, either as a stepping stone into the Southeast Asian and Pacific regions, or for locating their regional headquarters functions for the management of group companies in Asia.
Kitahama Partners has several Japanese attorneys who have experience working for local law firms in Singapore, and we have developed good relationships with multiple local law firms over many years. We assist Japanese companies to establish a presence in Singapore through the establishment of local subsidiaries, joint ventures and transfers of technology, M&A, and other means. We also handle an extensive range of matters related to Singapore, including dispute resolution, such as international arbitration in the Singapore International Arbitration Center (SIAC), and various types of legal research.