Balancing Growth and Giving: 6 Types of Donations Which Are Tax Deductible In Singapore

In a world where kindness and compassion often seem overshadowed by the clamor of daily life, a little red dot on the global map has been silently proving that size doesn’t dictate the magnitude of generosity. Singapore, often celebrated for its economic prowess and technological innovation, has carved out a remarkable place for itself on the global giving stage.

Ranked 31st in the world for its giving efforts over the past decade, according to the World Giving Index, this city-state has been quietly embracing the spirit of altruism and community support.




The World Giving Index, a comprehensive report published by the Charities Aid Foundation in the United Kingdom, has been diligently tracking and analyzing global giving trends since 2009. The index takes a close look at three key aspects of giving: helping strangers or those in need, donating money to charities, and volunteering time for organizations. In this arena, Singapore has showcased its willingness to go above and beyond.

The Altruistic Red Dot

In the year 2021 alone, tax-deductible donations received by Institutions of a Public Character (IPCs) amounted to an impressive $1.03 billion, as highlighted by the Commissioner of Charities Annual Report 2021. This not only underscores the financial contributions of Singaporeans but also signifies the profound impact of the giving culture within the nation.

Tax incentives, offering deductions of 2.5 times the qualifying donations, have undoubtedly played a role in encouraging individuals and corporations to open their hearts and wallets a little wider. However, it’s essential to note that while monetary donations play a pivotal role, they’re not the sole avenue for individuals to contribute while enjoying tax benefits.

Diverse Forms of Giving

Singapore’s commitment to fostering a culture of giving extends far beyond cash contributions. Let’s delve into six diverse forms of donations that qualify for tax deductions:

1. Cash Donations: Both individual and corporate donors can contribute outright cash donations to approved IPCs benefiting the local community or the Singapore Government. These donations are fully tax-deductible, provided they don’t yield any material benefit to the donor. If there is a benefit received, the tax deduction is based on the difference between the donation and the value of the benefit.

2. Shares Donations: Individuals can donate public shares listed on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) or units in unit trusts traded in Singapore to approved IPCs, qualifying for tax deductions. However, donations involving options and shares with restricted holding periods are not covered under this scheme.

3. Artefact Donations: Museums benefit from this form of giving, where both individuals and corporations can enjoy tax deductions by donating items that meet specific criteria, including approval from the National Heritage Board (NHB) and the artefact’s recognition as worthy of collection.

4. Donation under the Public Art Tax Incentive Scheme (PATIS): A scheme introduced in 2006, PATIS offers tax deductions to companies or individuals contributing sculptures or artworks for public display to the National Heritage Board or its approved recipients. The donations include monetary support, services for installation or maintenance, and sculptures for indoor public display.

5. Land & Building Donations: Corporate and individual donors who contribute land or buildings to approved IPCs are eligible for tax deductions since 2003. This requires a market value appraisal and endorsement from IRAS, but the valuation costs are not tax deductible.

6. Naming Donations: Donations to name IPCs, their facilities, events, or programs, as well as approved beneficiaries’ facilities, fall under this category. Additionally, when donors’ names or logos are acknowledged in IPC collaterals, tax deductions apply.

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