Header Top Bar

WhatsApp Us +852 9298 9902

Hong Kong vs Singapore: The Best Place For Business

Hong Kong vs Singapore: The Best Place For Business

Hong Kong vs Singapore

Selecting the ideal location to initiate a business is a pivotal decision directly impacting its success and expansion. 

Choosing between doing business in Hong Kong and Singapore is a prevalent topic among entrepreneurs. Both cities are celebrated globally as business-friendly locales characterised by their supportive business climates, streamlined regulations, advantageous tax regimes, abundant investment opportunities, advanced infrastructure, and vibrant sectors. 

The comparison of Hong Kong and Singapore is more than determining which is superior, but rather about understanding their distinct features and strengths that cater to varied business needs and goals.

This analysis compares these two Asian powerhouses, focusing on the business environment, regulations, taxation, investment opportunities, infrastructure, and industry strengths. This detailed exploration will provide the insights necessary to make an informed choice.

Want to start a business in Hong Kong? Contact us at InCorp today

Hong Kong vs Singapore: At A Glance

Country Singapore Hong Kong
Corporate Tax Rate 17% 16.50%
Regulatory Environment Stringent compliance requirements Streamlined, efficient procedures
Funding & Investment Robust governmental support, thriving startup ecosystem Vibrant financial markets, major IPO centre, close China ties
Infrastructure & Connectivity Advanced infrastructure, excellent internet connectivity High-efficiency airport, major seaport, strategic access to China
Key Industries Broadly diversified: manufacturing, financial services, information and communications, trade Financial services-focused: banking, insurance, retail, and tourism sectors

Business Environment in Hong Kong and Singapore

Doing business in Hong Kong is a breeze with its free-market economy, significantly driven by international trade and finance. It benefits from laissez-faire governance, low taxation, and its status as a Special Administrative Region (SAR), making it an essential gateway to mainland China’s expansive market.

In contrast, according to the World Bank, Singapore is recognised as one of the world’s easiest places to conduct business. It boasts a corruption-free environment, a robust legal framework, and a highly efficient workforce. Strategically positioned at Southeast Asia’s heart, Singapore is an excellent entry point for businesses exploring the region’s burgeoning markets.

Taxation and Regulations

Hong Kong offers a territorial taxation system, taxing only income earned within the city at a flat rate of 16.5%, without implementing VAT or GST. This simplicity aids businesses in financial planning and budgeting.

Singapore’s tax regime features a single-tier corporate tax system capped at 17%, with numerous incentives and exemptions that effectively lower the tax burden for many businesses. Additionally, Singapore applies a GST of 8%, set to increase to 9% in 2024.

The regulatory frameworks in both cities are transparent and uphold the rule of law, ensuring business rights protection. However, Hong Kong’s less stringent compliance requirements provide a more attractive environment for businesses prioritising operational efficiency.

Also Read: Guide to Taxation and Accounting in Hong Kong

Funding and Investment

Both cities present robust financial environments conducive to business funding and investments. Hong Kong is a major global IPO hub and home to a significant stock market, benefiting from its close ties to mainland China and its position as a leading offshore RMB hub.

Singapore attracts businesses with strong government support, including grants and loans, and a thriving venture capitalists and incubators ecosystem.

Infrastructure and Connectivity

Hong Kong and Singapore boast world-class infrastructure and sophisticated transport networks. Hong Kong’s major global cargo hub airport and its bustling deep-water seaport provide strategic trade advantages.

Conversely, Singapore features cutting-edge ports, airports, ICT networks, and exceptional internet connectivity crucial in the digital era.

Industries and Sectors

Hong Kong is a prominent financial centre with a substantial contribution from its financial services sector to its GDP. Thanks to its cultural ties with China, it also enjoys a vibrant retail and tourism sector.

Singapore’s economy is more diversified, excelling in manufacturing, financial services, ICT, and wholesale trade, making it a vital player in the global supply chain and logistics.

Also Read: Top 10 Most Profitable Businesses To Start In Hong Kong 2024


While both cities present highly competitive environments, doing business in Hong Kong is the better option due to its favourable taxation, dynamic funding opportunities, superior connectivity, and comprehensive industry expertise. 

These attributes make it an exceptionally advantageous choice for businesses aiming to extend their global reach and tap into the burgeoning Chinese market. Therefore, Hong Kong offers a formidable platform for entrepreneurs and corporations strategising to solidify their presence in Asia and beyond.

Where To Next?

If you are contemplating establishing or expanding your business in this vibrant market, InCorp Hong Kong can provide tailored incorporation services to streamline your entry and operations. 

We invite you to leverage our extensive local expertise and comprehensive support system to maximise your business potential in Hong Kong. Connect with InCorp today to begin your journey towards successful business incorporation in one of the world’s leading financial hubs.

Frequently Asked Questions About Hong Kong vs. Singapore

  • Hong Kong's business environment is noted for its efficiency and flexibility compared to Singapore's stricter framework. It boasts lower corporate tax rates, prominence as a major Initial Public Offering (IPO) hub, and close economic ties with mainland China, which are all unique benefits. Furthermore, Hong Kong's leading global airport and seaport and direct mainland market access strategically enhance its business appeal. The city's role as a global financial centre and its vibrant tourism sector add to its attractiveness.
  • Hong Kong's geographical and cultural closeness to mainland China gives businesses privileged access to one of the world's largest markets. This proximity is especially beneficial for the financial, retail, and tourism sectors, significantly impacting Hong Kong’s economic performance and contributing to its GDP.
  • Hong Kong is a global financial hub, hosting the highest density of banking institutions globally. Its financial services sector—including banking, insurance, and securities—is crucial in its economic framework. Additionally, the city's retail and tourism industries thrive, fueled by continuous influxes from mainland China.
  • While both Hong Kong and Singapore offer exceptional infrastructure and connectivity, Hong Kong’s geographical benefits, superior airport, and seaport facilities provide unmatched access to the Chinese and wider Asian markets. These features position Hong Kong as a powerful candidate in infrastructure and connectivity terms.
  • Singapore and Hong Kong present highly competitive business landscapes, each with distinct advantages. Singapore shines with its diversified economy, stringent regulatory environment, and prowess in global logistics. However, Hong Kong's more adaptable business climate, competitive tax rates, and strategic market access, especially to China, give it an edge for businesses focused on Asian markets and global expansion. Deciding between the two depends on a business's specific needs, target market, and strategic goals.

Contact Us

Let Us Help You Successfully Incorporate your Company in Hong Kong

About the Author

InCorp Content Team

InCorp's content team includes talented copywriters from our regional group and globally. We contribute informative, thought leadership, and market-trending articles to guide aspiring business entrepreneurs to a higher level across the Asia-Pacific region.

More on Business Blogs in Hong Kong

Contact Us