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Beginner’s Guide on Starting a Pharmaceutical Business in Singapore

Starting a Pharmaceutical Business in SingaporeWould you like to invest in a business that can guarantee excellent returns consistently? If that is what you desire, then you should prepare yourself for starting a pharmaceutical business in Singapore. In the last decade, Singapore’s pharmaceutical industry has been growing beyond expectations. A majority of the credit for this goes to Singapore’s world-class infrastructure, together with the government’s favourable attitude towards investors.

With little knowledge of pharmacy and hiring a pharmacist can help you thrive in the pharmaceutical industry. Although a technical field, the advantages of setting up one are plenty. And trust us, when we say this, starting a pharmaceutical business in  Singapore is a risk worth taking.

Starting your business will not be a cakewalk, and you must be ready to face stiff competition since there are numerous other pharmaceutical companies already in place in Singapore. As an initial step, you will need to conduct a thorough study of the market and make a detailed plan covering every aspect. The plan should include your budget, the licenses you require, the products you will launch, and so on. To help you set up your pharmaceutical business without glitches, we have brought together every possible information you will require.


Industry Practices for Pharmaceutical Business in Singapore

Trade experts state that Singapore’s pharmaceutical sector’s global sales will reach around $1.2 billion this year. The tremendous innovations and technological development in the nation during the last ten years have made this possible. Yet another significant factor is the abundance of skilled biomedical forces in the nation. The low operational risk is another factor that attracts investors to this sector. Singapore’s connectivity to Southeast Asia and the Western world and its favourable government policies are other strong reasons for the pharmaceutical sector’s growth.

Singapore is one of the top re-exporters of pharmaceutical products. The world’s top pharma companies, including Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis, and many others, have their manufacturing centres in Singapore. One strong reason why these pharma giants prefer Singapore is the state-of-the-art ready-built facilities available here, providing industrial and laboratory space to these firms.

If you also desire to establish your presence in Singapore’s pharmaceutical sector, you will need to understand all the legal formalities well so that you run your business without trouble. Having prior experience in the pharmaceutical industry or gaining a fundamental knowledge of the sector can be a big advantage,

Your options include starting a pharmaceutical manufacturing company, a marketing or trading company dealing in pharmaceutical products, or becoming a distributor. You can also set up a retail pharmacy selling over-the-counter drugs and other health products.


Business Registration

The next step towards starting a pharmaceutical business in Singapore is registering your business. First, decide which business structure will be the most suitable for meeting your objectives. You can start a sole proprietorship, a limited liability partnership, or a private limited company based on your unique requirements.

Obtain additional information on the different business entities by contacting 3E Accounting, a Singapore company registration expert. Yet another requirement is that you will need to register your firm with the Singapore Trade Register.

If your interests lie in becoming a pharmacist, you will need to employ specialized staff, like pharmacists who have registered themselves with the Singapore Pharmacy Council. The council will issue a Practicing Certificate if it finds your qualifications are in line with their requirements.


Licenses and Permits

You will need to acquire the relevant licenses and permits when starting a pharmaceutical business. But before you get your product license, your pharmacy will also undergo an audit and inspection by the Singapore Health Sciences Authority (HSA) and will need to obtain a healthcare institution license.

The Health Science Authority (HSA) and the Health Products Act regulate the pharmaceutical sector in Singapore. With their stringent practices, they ensure that medical products and devices are of the highest quality and cost-effective. One big plus point is that the Singaporean government has always been encouraging research and development in the industry with its large investments in the sector.

Investing in setting up a retail pharmacy is easier since the requirements are not very stringent. However, even such a business needs the approval of the HSA. Your retail pharmacy can sell over-the-counter products and other health products like oral dental gums, therapeutic products, or products that are on the General Sale List. In addition, you will also require import and export permits and wholesale retailer permits.

Also, registering your company with the Singapore Trade Register is essential before obtaining permits and licenses. Your company can begin its operations only after receiving your product license, which you may receive for only a single product. If you are new to all this, do not worry, 3E Accounting will help in every step of your company incorporation.

Get more information about licenses from 3E Accounting, which has unmatched experience in providing SG company incorporation services.



Singapore is one of the topmost centres in Asia for pharmaceutical manufacturing and research. Hence, investing in the pharmaceutical business will surely earn you excellent profits and provide many future expansion opportunities. And with a company like 3E Accounting taking care of company registration and documentation work, your work is more likely to excel.

3E Accounting takes complete responsibility for all the work for registering a company which ensures that you have sufficient time to focus on building your own empire.

All the information provided above will help simplify the process of starting a pharmaceutical business in Singapore. However, since the legal requirements are too complicated, it would be better to partner with a reputed corporate service provider in Singapore, such as 3E Accounting.

Our highly capable and experienced team will manage all mandatory legalities and make the business setup process smooth for you. All you require is to contact 3E Accounting whenever you are ready to start your pharmacy business. Our team is always ready and more than happy to assist the client!

Starting a Pharmaceutical Business in Singapore