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Bonded Warehouse

Updated: Jun 23, 2023

Application for Zero-GST Warehouse / Bonded Warehouse License

Bonded Warehouse
Bonded Warehouse

Zero-GST Warehouse / Bonded Warehouse

Zero-GST Warehouse or Bonded Warehouse, also known as ZG Warehouse, is a designated area approved by Singapore Customs for storing imported non-dutiable goods for which GST tax is suspended. Depending on the circumstances, the ZG warehouse can be the entire site, a designated part of the site, a storage tank or any other place approved by Singapore Customs. ZG warehouses cannot be used to store dutiable goods, locally sourced or locally manufactured goods, and goods on which GST has been paid.

Zero-GST Warehouse Scheme

The Zero-GST Warehouse Scheme (ZGS) allows approved companies to store imported non-dutiable goods indefinitely in a designated area licensed by Singapore Customs, with the Goods and Services Tax (GST) suspended. This designated area is called the licensed premises.

GST is payable when these goods are taken out of the zero-GST warehouse for local use or consumption. No GST is payable when these goods are removed for export, or when the supply or sale of these goods occurs while they are in warehouse.

License Types under ZGS

There are 3 license types to suit the different needs of companies:

  • Zero-GST Warehouse Type I

  • Zero-GST Warehouse Type II

  • Zero-GST Warehouse Type III

The level of facilitation provided and the standard of company record keeping and internal control standards increase from Type I to Type III.

Type I and Type II licensees need to qualify for the “Standard” and “Intermediate” bands respectively under the TradeFIRST framework, while Type III licensees need to qualify for the “Enhanced” or “Premium” bands.

How to Qualify?

To qualify for the Zero-GST Warehouse Scheme, a company must:

  • Be registered for GST with the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS)

  • Have a valid Customs Account

  • Have proven compliance record with Singapore Customs and IRAS

  • Make sure that the site to be licensed is a storage-based facility with security measures in place whereby:

The premises are primarily used for the storage of goods; and

The tenant/lessee has legal authority and control over the premises, including entering into a tenancy agreement with the landlord, and the right to install or change any security features or plans at the site as required by Singapore Customs

  • Have good inventory record-keeping and warehouse procedures

  • Be responsible for the security, accountability and control of goods

  • Be assessed by TradeFIRST and meet all mandatory criteria, while meeting the minimum band for compliance with the corresponding zero-GST warehouse license type


TradeFIRST stands for Trade Facilitation and Integrated Risk-Based System. It is a comprehensive assessment framework that provides an overall assessment of the company and determines the degree of facilitation accorded.

The assessment is free and mandatory for all companies wishing to apply for a Singapore Customs scheme or license.

Participation in ASEAN Customs Declaration Document (ACDD) and ASEAN Customs Transit System (ACTS) will earn additional points based on TradeFIRST assessment from 1 January 2023. Please refer to the TradeFIRST Self-Assessment Checklist "B. Participation in ASW" for more information.

The TradeFIRST Benefits

Greater Facilitation

A risk-managed approach is taken and facilitation levels are categorized into 5 bands - Basic, Standard, Intermediate, Enhanced and Premium.

The higher your TradeFIRST band, the greater the facilitation accorded to you.

For example, a company that obtains a Premium band can enjoy the facilitation and schemes accorded to the Premium band and the ones below it (in this case, Basic to Premium).

This list shows the various Customs facilitation and schemes under each TradeFIRST band.

  • Standard Band

Zero-GST Warehouse Scheme Type I

  • Intermediate Band

Zero-GST Warehouse Scheme Type II

  • Enhanced Band

Zero-GST Warehouse Scheme Type III

TradeFIRST Assessment

There are 6 sections under the TradeFIRST assessment framework:

1) Company Profile
  • Corporate policies

  • Financial background

2) Procedures and Processes
  • Management of information and records

  • Management of personnel, including training

3) Security
  • Business partnering and customer screening

  • Security risk assessment and incident management

  • Business continuity

  • Security of cargo, containers and conveyance

  • Premises security and access control

4) Inventory Management
  • Capability of inventory system to track and trace movement of goods, and to flag out discrepancies

5) Other Scheme-Specific Requirements
  • Specific requirements applicable to applicants of certain Customs schemes, such as the Strategic Trade Scheme Bulk Permit

6) Compliance
  • Company’s compliance records

How to Apply

1. The company completes the TradeFIRST Self-Assessment Checklist as follows and sends it to Customs:

For ZGS Type I; or

For ZGS Type II and III.

2. Prepare these supporting documents:

  • Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority BizFile Report

  • Audited financial statements for the past 3 years

  • A copy of the layout plan. Please indicate on the layout plan the intended licensed premises, entry/exit points and security features such as CCTV and alarm systems. The plan must show the address affixed with the company stamp.

  • Title Deed or Tenancy Agreement

  • Other relevant documents

3. Apply online.

The company completes the TradeFIRST Self-Assessment Checklist and sends it to Customs along with relevant supporting documents.

Upon receipt of relevant supporting documents, an on-site assessment will be scheduled and conducted.

Company receives the results of its application, identifying the band that determines the facilitation and scheme available to the company, and areas for improvement, if any.

Singapore Customs reserves the right to impose a Banker’s Guarantee or insurance bond if required.

Time Taken

TradeFIRST Self-Assessment Checklist assessments typically take approximately 3 to 4 months to process, following complete submission of relevant documentation. For more complex cases, it may take longer.

Once the application is successful, Singapore Customs will contact you to follow up on your application.

Licence Fee

An annual license fee is payable when the license is issued. It is based on the average stock value of goods stored in licensed premises.

Average Stock Value


​S$1 million or less


​More than S$1 million but less than S$5 million


​S$5 million or more


Connect with Us

For assistance or requirements on the licence application requirements, please contact us.

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