Singapore - Market ChallengesSingapore - Market Challenges
Singapore is a free port as more than 99% of all imports enter Singapore duty-free. For social and/or environmental reasons, it levies high excise taxes on distilled spirits and wine, tobacco products, motor vehicles, and gasoline. Competition with global suppliers is a key challenge for American companies operating in Singapore. As the nation continues to restructure its economy, U.S. companies doing business in the City State can expect increased operating costs and continued tightening availability of foreign labor.
U.S. companies face technical import barriers for beef, pork and poultry products, and services barriers that include restrictions on the use of satellite dishes, direct-to-home satellite TV services, paid television subscriptions, legal, banking, and healthcare services.
Details on these trade barriers can be found in the USTR 2019 National Trade Estimate Report on Foreign Trade Barriers report which is available online at:
The next 50 years will present new challenges to Singapore in the form of an aging workforce, maturing economy, growing influence of social media, and increasing competition from other trade agreements and ASEAN partners. To counter the challenges, the Singapore Government’s Committee on the Future Economy released a report that identified strategies and Industry Transformation Maps to meet these and other challenges. More information is available here: https://www.futureeconomy.sg/
In addition, Singapore launched its Digital Government Blueprint in June 2018 underscoring its strategic plan to become a smart nation. The blueprint can be found here:
Singapore Trade Development and Promotion