Top 10 FAQs about Unique Entity Number (UEN)

Singapore Company Registration number or currently known as the Unique Entity Number (UEN) was implemented on 1st January 2009. Previously, all Singapore-registered entities used company registration number issued by various government agencies when facilitating transaction with various government agencies.

Since its introduction almost a decade ago, the Unique Entity Number (UEN) has become the official identification number assign to all nationally-approved organisations – a permanent official identifier necessary for the correspondence and interaction with all Singapore governmental authorities. This standardise the different formats of company registration number.

Find out relevant information regarding Unique Entity Number (UEN) in the top 10 FAQs.

  1. What is Unique Entity Number (UEN)?
    UEN refers to the standard identification number of an entity whether public company, private organisation, or social sector agency. UEN for registered entities is the counterpart to a resident’s NRIC (National Registration Identity Card).
  2. Who should obtain UEN?
    UEN is a requirement for Singapore-based entities (such as local companies and limited liability partnerships (LLPs), businesses and trade unions, representative offices and societies, as well as healthcare institutions).They should obtain UEN if they are engaging in regular, continuous, or constant dealings with various government agencies.
  3. What is a UEN Issuance Agency?
    It refers to a Singapore-mandated agency with the power and capacity to register a particular form of entity. These include the ACRA (Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority), MOM (Ministry of Manpower), ROS (Registry of Societies), and MCCY (Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth).
  4. Who are exempted from getting UEN?
    UEN will NOT be issued to:

    • Individuals (they are instead required to have their own identification numbers
    • Foreign-based entities with zero interaction with government agencies (or which have undergone a one-time transaction only)
    • Sub-entities of a Singapore company classified as a branch or division only
  5. What is the purpose of Unique Entity Number (UEN)?
    The UEN is the distinct identifier to an entity that is used to correspond and interact with any government authority during tax filing, permit application for import/export, and other similar activities. With the existence of a permanent UEN, there is no need to acquire different numbers to proceed with transactions involving a government agency.
  6. What does the Unique Entity Number (UEN) look like?
    The format of the UEN is a string of 9 or 10 characters composed of any variation of the following:

    • an alpha-numeric figure (number or letter)
    • the entity format or type
    • the issuing agency
    • the year of issuance
  7. Where can the UEN be obtained?
    All business entities, local companies, and organisations currently registered under the ACRA will retain and use the ACRA Registration Number as their UEN. Apart from ACRA, there are many other government-recognised UEN Issuance Agencies responsible for issuing the appropriate UEN for all types of business entities, taking into consideration the varying indicators provided by the agency. You can obtain the UEN from the following authorities (the full list can be found in www.uen.gov.sg):

    • the International Enterprise Singapore
    • the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore
    • the Ministry of Communications and Information
    • the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth
    • the Ministry of Defense
    • the Ministry of Education
    • the Ministry of Finance
    • the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
    • the Ministry of Health
    • the Ministry of Law
    • the Ministry of Manpower
    • the Ministry of National Development
    • the Monetary Authority
    • the People’s Association
    • the Registry of Societies
    • the Singapore Land Authority
  8. Why can ACRA-listed organisations retain and use their current ACRA Registration Numbers as UEN?
    Singapore-registered businesses comprise at least 85 per cent of all local entities which are mandated to acquire their own UEN. The main purpose for retention of the existing ACRA Registration Number is to limit disruptions and eliminate expenses associated with the registration process for a new UEN.
  9. Can a business entity or local company have more than one UEN?
    No. Only one UEN is issued by the appropriate issuing agency and this is the official UEN needed for any government transaction.
  10. How do I find out if my organisation has an existing UEN or has to obtain a new one?
    First, you can search via the ACRA official website to determine if your organisation has already been issued its ACRA Registration Number. In which case, this is your UEN. Otherwise, you can search through the online directory list of the relevant government agency where your organisation is listed or which can issue the UEN for your organisation.For more information on the UEN of your organisation, you can visit the UEN website at www.uen.gov.sg.
  11. Corporate Services Singapore for all your Company Needs

    help for uen registrationIf you want to seek for professional advice about the UEN of your entity, statutory compliance requirements from ACRA or other government agencies, as well as all other company services for smooth business operations, Corporate Services Singapore can assist you.

    Contact us today so you can know more about our full range of bespoke services that can help your company be prepared, stay compliant, and move forward towards growth and success.

Posted in Corporate Services.