What is GST?

You’ve probably heard about GST before – it stands for goods and services tax and is added to the price of most products and services sold for domestic consumption in Singapore. As it’s almost always included in the price on the shelf, you probably don’t give it a second thought.

How can GST affect my business?

If you’re a business, you may be required to register for and collect GST. That means you:

  • may need to add GST to your prices

  • will need to send that extra money to IRAS

  • can claim back any GST that you’re charged on business supplies

How much is GST?

  • 7% is the GST rate for most goods and services

  • 0% is the GST rate for exported goods 

  • 0% is the rate for international services (such as an air ticket from Singapore to Thailand)

GST exemptions

Some goods and services are exempt from GST, such as financial services, digital payment tokens, sale and lease of residential properties, and precious metals bought as an investment. Other things are considered out of scope (they sit outside the tax system).

You should never charge GST on exempt goods or services.  

Learn more about GST-exempt items from IRAS

How does GST work?

The GST on any item is designed to be paid by the consumer in the end, rather than by the businesses involved in its supply. Take this example:

How GST works in Singapore

GST on imports

You have to pay GST on most imported goods, whether for domestic consumption, sale or re-export, regardless of whether the importer is GST registered or not.

GST on exports

You don’t have to charge GST on exports. That includes products you sell on the internet to overseas customers.

Chapter 2: Registering for GST

Find out if your business needs to register for GST. If so, learn how to do it and find out what happens next.

Read next chapter

This guide is intended as general information only. Always check with a professional for advice.


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