Starting business in Philippines as a foreigner

Hi all,

I'm a Singaporean and thinking of bringing a business into the Philippines next year.

Since i do not have a spouse, i think the best suited business structure for me would be a corporation. Do anyone of you have any tips regarding managing the risks of giving close to 60% of the ownership to others? I have some friends in Manila whom i can trust but its never wrong to be safe.

My business will be something to do with live printing for corporations. Is this type of business eligible for the 40/60 law?

Can anyone give an insight to how I, as a business owner, will be taxed?

Additionally, does anyone have a good breakdown of costs (visa etc) for a foreigner staying in Manila?

Appreciate all your help!

Absentee business ownership will not work here. Must be hands on.

The assumption here is that you would enjoy  living in the Philippines and you have already checked out if your business model would work here successfully?   If so, I hope you will see some good recommendations for a corporate business lawyer.
       By the way, what is 'live printing' ?

Hi all,

I will be living in Manila and running the business myself.

My business idea is events related. We have run the business in Singapore successfully and looking to replicate it in Manila. However, we are concerned with the ownership restriction. Is there any way to mitigate those risks?

'More than 40% and up to 100% foreign ownership of a Domestic Market Enterprise may be allowed as long as the paid-in capital is a minimum of USD 200,000.00'

I assume you have read:
   'Foreign Ownership of Corporations in the Philippines' where this above statement forms part of the text.

If your invested capital is less than $200,000, you might minimize the risks with the other 60% Filipino ownership by having their own cash invested, thereby creating obvious incentives for success.   Furthermore, you might see if it is  possible in the Philippines to structure your corporation with 2 classes of shares.  (eg. voting and nonvoting)

I suggest you speak to a qualified attorney who is experienced in setting up companies for foreigners.
My friends used one here in Cagayan de oro ,who has a few foreign clients and can advise you on protecting your investment.

I think there is an opportunity for someone to set up  a few comprehensive websites here in the Philippines.  First, it would be so helpful if there was a useable up to date real estate  Multi  Listing Service, similar to  what exists in the USA and Canada.  Another idea, it would also be helpful to see an on-line catalog of legal services in the Philippines which included Names, Firm Specialization, Location and Fee structures to name a few.  To be able to add feedback as well would be extremely helpful for others.  Many responses on Expat  suggest a 'good' lawyer, but where ?

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