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Introducing the next best place in the world to store gold

It’s official. Starting October 1, 2012, Singapore will be the best place in the world to store gold.

As a major international financial center, Singapore is rapidly becoming THE place to invest and do business in Asia. Why? Because it’s just so easy. Regulation is minimal, corruption is among the lowest in the world, and the tax structure is very friendly to businesses and investors. With one exception.

Traditionally, physical gold and silver purchases in Singapore have been taxed at a 7% GST rate (like VAT, or a national sales tax). The only legitimate exception was purchasing (and subsequently storing) at the Freeport facility, adjacent to the main airport.

In just-released budget documents, however, the government of Singapore announced that it will begin waiving GST on purchases of investment grade gold, silver, and other precious metals effective October 1st.

This is huge… and it should really make Singapore the best place in the world to buy and store gold. Prices are already incredibly competitive, with ultra-low premiums and very reasonable storage costs.

The Cisco Certis secure storage facility, for example, is incredibly safe, insured, and open up to 14-hours per day. Annual charges for a box are as little as S$99 (roughly $75 USD).

Storing gold overseas is a smart strategy for anyone interested in international diversification, especially if you’re concerned about the potential for gold confiscation. Come October, Singapore will be the top place to go.

On to this week’s questions.

First, Chuck asks, “Simon, I travel a lot overseas… not as much as you do, but I get around. And one of the things I’ve noticed is that it can sometimes be difficult to buy certain things… predominantly electronic gadgets and the like. How is Chile in this regard? Can you typically find what you want?”


In many places, finding creature comforts from home can be a big challenge. Many countries have high tariff regimes, are not open to free trade, and/or have ridiculously high excise and sales taxes that make imported goods cost prohibitive.

Technology is generally at the top of the list. What you would pay $1,000 for back home might cost 2 or 3 times as much overseas.

It’s different in Chile; this country has more free trade agreements than just about anywhere else on the planet; I’ve always been able to find the things that I want here, and the price I’ve paid is often the same, or less, than in North America.

For example, I recently purchased an entry-level Macbook for about $1000 (slightly less than what I would have paid in the US), a 40″ flatscreen LCD TV for $400, and a wireless router for less than $15.

I’ve also been able to find some interesting things that I haven’t seen anywhere else, at least in retail stores.

My new favorite toy is something called a UbiRock– it’s a vibration speaker that essentially turns any surface (a table, desk, wall, ceiling, etc.) into a premium quality speaker. Music sounds completely different… it’s like turning an entire room into natural surround sound.

You’ll also see all kinds of different mobile phones down here, as well as automobile makes and models that don’t exist anywhere else.

Next, Jonathan asks, “Simon, what’s your take on the prospect of war between Iran and Israel…?”

I don’t see how it doesn’t happen. If you had a neighbor who walked outside of his house each day screaming that he was going to kill your family and burn your house down, most people would eventually take a shovel to the guy’s face.

The regional friction never goes away. But as it’s now escalated to nuclear proportions, the probability of conflict is incredibly high. I’m glad I’m down here in the southern hemisphere.

Last, Katrina asks, “Simon, quick question; it seems like there’s so much noise on the Internet. Is there one particular website that you would recommend for staying abreast of financial and economic developments that isn’t part of the mainstream propaganda..?”

Without doubt, I read it every day as I find it to be the single best source of financial news– TV, print, or online, period.

About the author: Simon Black is an international investor, entrepreneur, permanent traveler, free man, and founder of Sovereign Man. His free daily e-letter and crash course is about using the experiences from his life and travels to help you achieve more freedom.

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  • localhero100

    “I don’t see
    how it doesn’t happen. If you had a neighbor who walked outside of his
    house each day screaming that he was going to kill your family and burn
    your house down, most people would eventually take a shovel to the guy’s
    face.”Really? This is your take on what’s really going on in the Middle East? Iran is the “bad guy” here? A country entirely surrounded with US military bases (see link below) and the mad-dog state of Israel taunting them with preposterous false-flag operations? I expected a little more honest assessment from a worldly fellow like you and, especially, a far more media-savvy one.'ve got your (Israeli-made) blinders on on this one.

    • DH

      Yes, Iran is the bad guy here. Jeez, after 30+ years of brutal theocracy, does an honest person really have to ask this question? We should have brought down the regime in 1979 when they attacked our embassy (which is an act of war).

  • krybaby

    Hello Simon
    Several of us are planning a visit to Chile soon.  We land at Santiago and go to the shore area for a cruise.  Why is Chile charging the exorbitant entry fee of $140.00 US dollars to US citizens?  It sure isn’t helping any of us and it would be a dang site better to let us tourists keep the 140 to spend on “stuff” in Chile.  Itsa’ rip.

    • Bruce

      That’s in response to the US federal government doing the same to Chilean citizens. As always, your government is looking out for you… :(

    • NewYorker

      The U.S. charges for Chilean citizens to come to the United States, and U.S. citizens are charged a  “reciprocity fee.” We pay the same amount to enter Chile as the U.S. government charges Chileans to enter the U.S. I saw the visa fees change a couple years ago when I traveled to China again.

      Frankly, I think the U.S. should be ENCOURAGING TOURISM, and should lower U.S. Visa fees. We aren’t getting as much tourism as we could, and we have a bad rep for making it hard for people to come here.

      I want more foreigners to visit my wonderful city of New York.

    • Evan

      I think because that is what the U.S. government charges Chileans to obtain a tourist visa. It’s reciprocity.

    • Fernao

      krybaby: More than likely the US charges $140.00 to Chileans for visa fees. This would be similar to the reciprocity that Brazil uses in its visa fees.

      • Chileno in Cali

        Actually we chileans spend $165.00 getting an american visa, which is not granted to be approved, and if not the Deparment of States do not refund us, anlike the entry of any american in Chile is always granted. Didn’t reciprocity meant equal to both sides?

      • Turnbull

        Argentina charges Reciprocity fees as follows
        USA $125US
        Canada   $100US
        Australia  $75US

        No other countries are charged

    • nomadcapitalist

      They’re doing what every country whose citizens the US treats like criminals do: impose reciprocity fees. Try getting a tourist visa as a Chinese person just to attend your child’s wedding in the US. You will waste a full day plus travel time. The US has the most arrogant tourist policy in the free world and its amazing anybody wants to visit considering how many other great places exist and are friendlier.

  • John Lloyd

    It looks like even Singapore is not immune to anti-foreigner sentiment. I think this is the one flaw in Simon’s flag planting. Foreign workers are treated well when things are good but when the tide turns they are very easy targets.

    • nomadcapitalist

      That’s the point of having flags. I don’t think Singaporeans are going to run like madmen through the FreePort and single out the gold owned by foreigners so they can steal it. If Singapore becomes somewhere unsuitable to live in, which I doubt will happen before it happens elsewhere first, then you should have a backup place to go.

  • Portable Income

    Is there a service that will ship gold coins that we presently own to Singapore for storage there?

    • Gret

       US Postal Service Registered mail is secure, but of course you will have to deal with reporting requirements.  But who would receive them?  Trust is the big issue.  Also such an arrangement could be considered a “financial” account

  • Duggyscooter

    the 15 t debt is the killer..all nation states have criminal central banx ripping off their  econ is crumbling…end the fed

  • Duggyscooter

    yesterday i replied to a post similar to these posts , just a comment section of a post was  signed by my neice and her face book page popped up!!!  i think the govtIs using facebook to spy on us !!!!!!!!

  • Mark Foo

    Hi Simon,

    Since you highly recommend us to be internationally diversified, then would you recommend a Singaporean to buy and store gold in Singapore since it will become the best place to do so as you’ve mentioned?



  • Fernao

    I did call Certis Security as I wanted to set up a safety deposit box to store metals.  They do not have any type of arrangement where you can get an agent there in Singapore to accept the metals and then put them in your safety box. Right now, I can not fly to Singapore each time to put metals in box there.

    • Jolintay

      Well, the 7% get is still payable until October so you’ve got 8 months to make a friend there who will do the buying and depositing for you.

    • Gret

       There is a huge trust issue in having an agent do this.  Not only could the agent cheat you but you could claim that the agent cheated you.  No one will want to do this.

  • Vw123

    …”a neighbour who walked outside of his house each day screaming that he was going to kill your family and burn your house down”…
    Oh, Really?  This allegory seems to reflect a blindsided view that puts the blame squarely on one side and contributes to a general attitude that’s bound to sooner or later result in bloodshed & tears.
    Only by respecting the view from the other side we may be able to separate fact from fiction, expose demagoguerie & deception, and stop the insane cycle of violence in this region.

    Imagine, “your house” had been the property of another family for the last 2000 years (actually 5000+ years, with some interruptions).  Since the house was big, they generously let you have a room.  When you brought in more & more of your relatives and took over more rooms, it came to an altercation which ended with your party locking the home owner into the basement, while other other members of his family escaped to neighbours.
    Understandably, the neighbours were upset about this turn of events and kept having run-ins with you about the issue.  But, backed by a powerful warlord, with his political clout, money, armaments & cohorts, you picked them off one by one.  Some were bought off or “convinced” through pressure tactics (‘plata o plomo’), while defiant ones (Iraq) saw their homes leveled… until only one recalcitrant, uncompromising neighbour remained, hurling insults at you and “threatening” to curtail the absolute power of you & your friends, and restore all rights to the family locked in the basement.

    Take Note: This neighbour is NOT threatening to evict your family from the house, but he does want to restore the full rights of the oppressed basement dwellers – which may derail your ambitious aspirations somewhat.

    Amazingly, this neighbour is painted as an evil force, bent on the destruction of our so imcomparably good & noble western values.  And, perversely, we’re even being brain-massaged into accepting a war as being righteous & inevitable… unless the neighbour cries “uncle”.
    Another 100 000 people wasted and countless more hurt, just so that you can keep the house all to yourself?
    Sadly, if past experience is any guide, that’s the way things are gonna end up.


      Amazing how far your distortion of facts can go:

      First of all:Claiming 5000 years of Palestinian property.
      Assuming you know the Bible, was Moses, King David,or Jesus Christ a Jew descending from the tribes of Israel or a Palestnian Arab?

      Second:”This neighbour is not threatening to evict your family from the house”.
      You may be right on this one, ’cause he is threatening the Israelis to slaughter them in their house without evicting them. Did you never hear Ahmeddinajad’s rant about the need of wiping Israel from the map and his mob chanting:”Death to Israel and USA”? This has nothing to do with restoring the rights of the “opressed basement dwellers”, since Ahmedinnajad really does not care if they are annihilated by his nukes together with their Jewish neighbours. 

      Third: Lamenting that Iran is being “painted unjustly as an evil force”. What do you think of Ahmedinnajad, hosting few years ago an international conference to promote the denial of Holocaust in which 6 million Jews were deliberately murdered? Also, what do you think of Ahmeddinajad’s “noble values” in face of the public executions of women accused of adultery, homosexuals etc.?


  • Bruno Clermont

    Where in Chile did you found those UbiRock speaker?

    Abcdin, Paris, Falabella or elsewhere?

    I’m looking to replace my old USB portable speaker that sound very bad.

  • Hector B

    “If you had a neighbor who walked outside of his house each day screaming that he was going to kill your family and burn your house down, most people would eventually take a shovel to the guy’s face.”, you must be speaking about Israel, b/c I’ve never read about Iran making those claims, unless you believe the infamous “wiping Israel off the face of the earth” which is a lie by our MSN to stir fluoride-head Americans into more pro-war stupidity. 

    • Mel Torme

      I believe he’s talking about America, Hector B.

      Got it?

  • Tb

    Liberals are the cancer of society.

    • mdumonde

      liberal-hating fascists are the cancer of society as well

  • Retreaded

    Thank you for your information on the Singapore metals purchase and storage. Would you please compare/comment on the storage and purchase of metals in the Perth Mint in Australia vs. that in Singapore?

  • Ignutz

      I hesitate to buy or send gold overseas to avoid the .gov
    from confiscating it for 3 reasons. Perhaps we could have your response on this?
    1. It is really unwise to not report foreign holdings >$10K,
    so the .gov knows you have it. Any order to confiscate will surely require repatriating these holdings.
    2. It was suggested that the .gov would likely put a 90%
    windfall profits tax on the metals- simple and easier than confiscating, and no way I see to avoid it.
    3. I think most of the world events were well planned and are merely preparations for a transition to a
    where every entity, including Singapore, Switzerland, etc.
    will fully cooperate with them on all matters. The US and Europe were once formidable obstacles- but no longer -
    they have maneuvered these populations into unpayable debts and fractious disagreement. Their time

    • nomadcapitalist

      Gold stored outside of the financial system overseas is viewed to be non-reportable. For now. Once it’s out, you only need to move your person out when things get bad. That’s why having gold offshore is just part of the action plan.

  • Manuel Pfister
  • nomadcapitalist

    I understand some dislike the China connection, but Hong Kong is still the freest economy in the world and one of few countries with no currency restrictions in or out of the country. Even in Singapore, you must declare S$30,000 or more at the airport.

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