Indirect Tax

GST cashflow savings – Import-GST Deferment Scheme “IGDS”

Jeremy O’Neill Jeremy O’Neill

Is your business substantially involved with the import of goods into Singapore?

Are you unnecessarily paying import GST and having to wait to file your GST return before you claim input tax credit for the import GST paid to Singapore Customs?

Overview & benefits:

The IGDS is aimed at supporting and reducing the financial burden for businesses that regularly import goods into Singapore for their business, or those of their overseas principles.

In short, approved businesses can defer the payment of import GST, usually payable upon importation, until the submission of their GST return, resulting in a cashflow benefit.

Qualifying conditions:

There are a number of conditions the business must meet to qualify for the scheme such as:

  • being GST-registered
  • being active and financially solvent
  • importing, or planning to import, goods for your business purposes (such as those for resale)
  • the value of its zero-rated supplies must be either
    • More than 50% of total supplies OR
    • More than S$10m in the previous 12 months
  • maintaining good internal controls and proper accounting records and
  • having a good compliance record with the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS), and Singapore Customs

Obtaining IGDS status:

There are a number of conditions the business must meet to qualify for the scheme such as:

  • being GST-registered for at least 3 years (exceptions by approval)

  • being active and financially solvent

  • importing, or planning to import, goods for your business purposes (such as those for resale)

  • GST return is filed on a monthly basis (or will upon approval)

  • maintaining a GIRO in place for payment GST

  • maintaining good internal controls and proper accounting records and

  • having a good compliance record with the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS), and Singapore Customs

Our approach / how we help:

Phase 1 – Preliminaries

Our experience has shown that investing time at the outset of our engagements to understand our clients and their specific  circumstances, reduces the overall timescales and costs involved for both parties.

We will work with you to establish whether the business qualifies for the scheme and help you understand its true benefits.

Phase 2 – Scope of work & application

Our GST specialists, who are accredited with the SIATP, will work with you and your teams in a collaborative way, to ensure that the ASK review is completed, signed-off and submitted to the IRAS in accordance with the IGDS application requirements.

Phase 3 – Implementation

From the understanding we gained of your finance system(s) and GST reporting process during the ASK review, we can advise and assist you on the changes required to ensure the business remains GST-compliant and thus eligible to continue enjoying the benefits of the MES status.

Next step / how to begin:

Feel free to contact a member of our team to have a preliminary discussion.