Business License Application in Singapore

When you are registering your business in Singapore, it is sometimes necessary to get a permit depending on the type of business you are going to run. The system of the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) will notify you if you need a license from another authority. If you are wondering if your business needs a license, you can have a look at the details below. Here’s a guide to your business license application in Singapore.


License Application

To find out which specific government agencies you would need to ask for approval and to submit the application for license, you can visit the Online Business Licensing Service (OBLS).

Here, you can apply for a new license and submit your application to the relevant authorities.

Eligibility of the Person Submitting the License

Note that there is an eligibility criterion for the person submitting the business license application. The person should be at least 18 years of age and should hold either one of the following:

  • A SingPass,
  • A Dependant Pass
  • An Employment Pass
  • An Entre Pass


List of Businesses

Entertainment, Recreation and Sports

There are many entertainment sectors in which you can set up a business in, and some of these include:

  • Sports Clubs/ Associations (except country and golf clubs)
  • Recreation Clubs/ Associations (except country and golf clubs)
  • Martial Arts and Pugilistic Arts Institutions
  • Cyber ‘Cafes’
  • Cabarets, Night Clubs, Discotheques and Karaoke Lounges
  • Bars and Pubs
  • Amusement Parks/ Centers

To set up a business in any of the above fields, you may need a Public Entertainment License, Amusement Rides Permit, Work Permit, Advertisement License, among many others, all depending upon the specific sector you are setting up business in.

Events and Exhibition Services

For the organizers of indoor and outdoor events and for the exhibition stand designers and contractors, you may need a Public Entertainment License, Work Permit, Arts Entertainment License, among others, as per the field of your business.

Food and Beverage Outlet

Food and beverage outlets may include the following

  • Restaurants
  • Stall-holders and Hawkers
  • Coffee Shops, Canteens and Cafes
  • Bakeries without Seating Area

Depending upon the type of business mentioned above, you may need a Food Shop License, Hawker Stall License, Liquor License, Halal Eating Establishment Scheme, among others.

Hotel and Accommodation

You may require a CESS Registration, a Certificate of Registration and Hotel Keeper’s License, among many others, to operate either one of the following:

  • Camping sites and other provision of short-stay accommodation
  • Chalets
  • Hotels
  • Letting and operating of self-owned real estate except hotels, lodging and boarding houses
  • Lodging and boarding houses



Manufacturing of equipment (minerals, furniture, chemical products, electronic products etc.) would require licenses in the specific field. For example, the manufacture of fertilizers requires a Chemical Weapons Convention License, Permit to Buy, Store and Use Hazardous Substances and License to Import, Export and Sell Hazardous Substances.


From stationary shops to pet shops, pharmacies and florists, the retail sector includes a large number of goods for sale. You would need licenses for premises, depending upon your business type.


For the service sector, you might be required to obtain the Work Permit, Advertisement License and/or licenses for premises.

Wholesale (Import, Export and Distribute)

For the import, export and distribution of different products, you may need licenses for employment and premises, and licenses specific to the business you are dealing in.


For an in-depth guide about the business license application in Singapore, Contact us today!