By Lee Meixian
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Income tax and GST concessions for Singapore real estate investment trusts (S-Reits) will be extended for five more years to attract listings here, said Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Monday.
The GST concessions will also be enhanced to facilitate fund-raising by special purpose vehicles set up by Reits, he said.
However, the stamp duty concessions, which are mainly for the purchase of local properties, will be allowed to lapse after March 31, 2015.
“The concessions were intended to enable the industry to acquire a critical mass of local assets as a base from which the Reits can expand abroad. This has been achieved.
“Overall, Singapore’s tax regime for Reits continues to remain very competitive relative to those elsewhere in Asia. It will help anchor the sustainable growth of the S-Reit industry,” he said.
Currently, S-Reits enjoy tax exemption on foreign income from qualifying overseas properties, and can recover the GST incurred on its and its special purpose vehicles’ business expenses. They also enjoy stamp duty remission on Singapore properties purchased.