Singapore digest news (03.04-08.04)

Photo by Sergey Pronin

Russian diesel fuel imports to Singapore peaked

Russian diesel shipments to Singapore reached a more than one-year high in March and are likely to remain high in April, government data and industry sources show.

According to Enterprise Singapore, Refinitiv, Vortexa, diesel imports into Singapore reached 46,000 tons (342,700 barrels) in March after the Stemnitsa tanker arrived in the country on March 24 from the Russian port of Nakhodka.

At least another shipment of 44,000 tonnes of ultra-low-sulfur diesel is expected to reach Singapore from Kaliningrad in April after transshipment, the data showed.


Singapore Changi Airport has resumed free bus tours for transit passengers from April 3

Singapore Changi Airport resumed free bus tours for transit passengers from April 3, Travel News Asia writes.

There are three bus tour routes to choose from: the Changi area, the sightseeing tour of the center of Singapore and the cultural and historical tour (available from June) and one walking tour of Changi Airport itself.

Check-in must be done before going through immigration on a first-come, first-served basis at the Free Singapore Tour counters in the transit area. They are open from 7:13 to 2:50 in terminal T3 at gate F1 and in terminal T8 near gates AXNUMX-AXNUMX. Boarding passes and passport required.

A visa is required to visit Singapore, but citizens of the CIS countries, including Russians, can use the right of visa-free transit lasting no more than 96 hours. To do this, at passport control, you will need to present tickets from Singapore with a departure in the next 4 days.


Authorities in Singapore will help banks set common standards for crypto business

Singapore's central bank and police are helping banks set common standards for potential customers in the cryptocurrency sector.

The report that will be published will focus on payment services companies, stabelcoins, non-exchangeable tokens (NFTs) and gaming credits.

Representatives of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said there are no rules prohibiting local banks from dealing with cryptocurrencies or other forms of digital assets.

MAS explained that "as with any existing or potential customers, banks are required to conduct due diligence to manage the risks they pose." However, the decision to start/continue cooperation with a client is up to banks, "balancing commercial considerations and tolerance for business risk," the officials stressed.


Singapore updates its guidance on e-taxation for merger and acquisition scheme

Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore has published an updated e-tax guide, "Income Tax and Stamp Duty: Merger and Acquisition Scheme" (seventh edition). The guide outlines the details of the M&A scheme, which aims to encourage the growth of Singaporean companies, especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), through strategic acquisitions.

Under the scheme, a Singapore company (the acquiring company) that makes a qualifying acquisition of ordinary shares of another company (the target company) can use the following tax benefits:

- M&A allowance for purchase;

- Exemption from stamp duty on an agreement to sell a fair share of common stock or a deed of transfer entered into in connection with the acquisition of the relevant shares;

- Double Tax Deduction (DTD) on transaction costs incurred in connection with the acquisition of eligible shares (limited to acquisitions made between February 17, 2012 and December 31, 2025).


Singapore private home prices up 3.2% in first quarter: URA flash estimates

Private home prices in Singapore increased by 3.2 per cent in the first quarter of 2023, according to official flash estimates released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Monday (Apr 3).

However, sales fell by about 8 per cent on a quarter-on-quarter basis and by about 38 per cent on a year-on-year basis.