andrew henderson menu

Andrew Henderson

Founder of Nomad Capitalist and the world’s most sought-after expert on global citizenship.


What we’re all about


Meet our 80+ global team


We’re here to serve you


Your questions answered


Read our testimonials


Get free email updates



Our flagship service for entrepreneurs and investors


Create your Action Plan directly with the Mr. Henderson himself


Claim a second passport based on familial connections


Click here to see all our products and services


Discover the world’s best passports to have in an ever-changing world


Explore the citizenship options using our interactive citizenship map


Explore the tax details for countries using our interactive tax map


Click here to see all of our research and interactive tools


Learn from a curated “Who’s Who” of business speakers from around the world, get our latest R&D updates, and rub shoulders with successful people from all corners of the world.


Andrew Henderson wrote the #1 best-selling book that redefines life as a diversified,
global citizen in the 21st century… and how you can join the movement.


Hong Kong and Singapore: Hubs for investors and entrepreneurs

Fallback Image

Dateline: Hong Kong

When thinking of some of the most stable, business-friendly, capitalist, and financially robust places in Asia, Hong Kong and Singapore are at, or very close to, the top of the list.

The two jurisdictions are similar to each other in many ways.

Both are small island states. Both are financial gateways of a much larger region (Hong Kong for Greater China, Singapore is the hub of Southeast Asia). And both are wealth havens for foreign capital.

Because of these similarities, Hong Kong and Singapore are in fierce competition to become the most important center of international business, finance, and trade for Asia as a whole.

Clearly, both are doing things that are right while blowing most of their Western peers out of the water in many rankings.

Every year in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index, Hong Kong, and Singapore frequently swap places as Nos. 1 and 2.

Likewise, and despite their small sizes, each has one of the top five busiest container ports in the world, and each is a center of manufacturing.

In fact, if you look at the value of Singapore’s total manufacturing exports, it’s higher than any other country in Southeast Asia… despite being the smallest.

The country is able to do this through making high-value products such as pharmaceuticals and refined petroleum while using the space they have as efficiently as possible.

The world’s safest banks are here

While it’s natural to compare Hong Kong and Singapore with each other, there’s almost no comparison between the two and most of their East Asian or Western counterparts.

Both cities are home to some of the most stable and safest banks in the world. A report by Bloomberg ranks Hang Seng Bank, one of Hong Kong’s largest, as the most well-capitalized banks in the world.

Singapore and Hong Kong, despite together having about one-half of one percent of the world’s population, each grabbed two spots to claim four out of the top 10 banks on this list – more than the entire continent of Europe could do.

The only bad part is that it’s getting increasingly difficult for foreigners to open accounts with them and the window of opportunity is closing.

In addition to stable banking sectors and transparent legal systems, some of the lowest taxes in the world also helps the two cities draw tons of foreign capital – both from wealthy individuals and businesses.

If structured right, an offshore company in Hong Kong or Singapore can pay effectively zero percent tax if not serving local customers.

This is perfect for online or location independent businesses.

Neither country has capital gains tax or estate tax, making both places ideal for investors or wealthy retirees.

Otherwise, taxes are low for any type of company or individual. Businesses in Singapore pay a 17 percent flat tax and it’s 16.5 percent in Hong Kong.

For individuals, there is a rather simple tax bracket.

Even the very wealthiest of people in either city will pay no more than 20 percent in taxes, though most “normal” people pay quite a bit less. This does not include various tax deductions.

Perhaps best of all is the sheer ease of doing business. Everything is done transparently, efficiently and swiftly in Hong Kong and Singapore – from first incorporating your business, to paying taxes.

No threatening phone calls from the government, no tax attorney needed to find vague “loopholes,” and no imprisonment or fines if you mistakenly leave out a few cents worth of tax.

For those who are used to living in most other countries in the world, it truly is a breath of fresh air.

Which jurisdiction is better: Hong Kong or Singapore?

Many people can’t help but wonder if one of the two city-states is “better” than the other, and if one may even replace the other and make it obsolete in a few decade’s time.

The answer is definitely not a straightforward one. It depends entirely on what you’re looking for. Singapore and Hong Kong each have different things they do better than the other.

For example, Singapore is a hub for venture capital and entrepreneurship. Startup investors find the legal and corporate environment in Singapore a bit more transparent and easy to navigate due to the fact that they use English as a first language.

On the other hand, among Hong Kong’s specialties are finance and investment. Connections with financial markets in mainland China, as well as a historical and more widespread presence of multinational banks, brokerages, and other institutions give Hong Kong an edge over Singapore in this category.

The list goes on. Singapore does private banking. Hong Kong does investment banking. Singapore does foreign exchange. Hong Kong does foreign stocks. Singapore does precious metals. Hong Kong does international trade.

Rather than eventually having one beat the other out, it’s far more likely that one will complement the other – similar to the way London and Zurich, or New York and the San Francisco Bay Area do.

Either way, Hong Kong and Singapore are some of the best countries for business, not only in Asia but in the world. They are worth keeping an eye on for any international businessman or investor.


Sign up for our Weekly Rundown packed with hand-picked insights on global citizenship, offshore tax planning, and new places to diversify.


How to Invest in CBDCs?

How to Invest in CBDCs?

The evidence that Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) could soon replace physical cash, topple...

Reduce Your Taxes And Diversify Your Wealth

Nomad Capitalist has helped 1,500+ high-net-worth clients grow and protect their wealth safe from high taxes and greedy governments. Learn how our legal, holistic approach can help you.

What do you want to accomplish?

Let us know your goal and we will tell you how we can help you based on your details.


We handle your data according to our Privacy Policy. By entering your email address you grant us permission to send you the report and follow up emails later.