Under the Newspaper and Printing Presses Act, the term “newspaper” refers to any publication containing news, intelligence, reports of occurrences, or any remarks, observations or comments, in relation to such news, intelligence, reports of occurrences, or to any other matter of public interest, printed in any language and published for sale or free distribution at regular intervals or otherwise, but does not include any publication published by or for the Government.
Examples of newspapers include Entertainment/Leisure magazines, News magazines, Religious publications and Society/Club/Association publications.
FAQs on the Newspaper Permit can be found here (Search for "Newspaper Permit").
Who is This for?
The Newspaper Permit is a regulatory requirement by IMDA aimed at ensuring that newspapers published in Singapore meet content standards that promote responsible content creation and consumption.
A Newspaper Permit is required for:
- Printing or publishing a newspaper in Singapore;
- Publishing, selling or distributing a Malaysian newspaper in Singapore;
- Selling or distributing an offshore newspaper in Singapore. An offshore newspaper is a newspaper published outside Singapore, at intervals not exceeding one week, which carries news or reports on politics and current affairs of any country in Southeast Asia, and with a circulation of 300 or more copies in Singapore.
To print or publish a newspaper in Singapore with a frequency of weekly or less, a “newspaper company” must be formed as stipulated under the Newspaper and Printing Presses Act. However, if the applicants do not have the intention to run a newspaper company and wish to be exempted from this requirement, they should indicate so and provide the reasons for the exemption in the Permit application.
- A Permit is not required for one-off publications such as novels or commemorative booklet, and for online publications.
No fees are payable for a Newspaper Permit.
How to Apply
Local Newspapers (excluding newspapers by political parties)
For the printing or publication of a newspaper in Singapore, you may apply for a Newspaper Permit via GoBusiness.
For Newspapers by Political Parties, Malaysian Newspapers and Offshore Newspapers, please download the application forms at the links below.
Please complete the application forms and send them to the Registrar of Newspapers at the following address:
Registrar of Newspapers
c/o Info-communications Media Development Authority
10 Pasir Panjang Road #03-01
Mapletree Business City
The application to renew your Newspaper Permit can be submitted via GoBusiness. A letter informing permit holders on the renewal of their Newspaper Permits will be sent eight weeks before the expiry of the Permits. Permit holders can follow the instructions stated in the letter to renew their Permits.
If the application is submitted by a third party using a SingPass login, an original signed copy of the Letter of Authorisation is required. The template for the Letter of Authorisation can be downloaded here (179.63KB).
It typically takes 15 working days to process and issue a Newspaper Permit. An incomplete or inaccurate submission may lengthen the processing timeframe. Applicants are encouraged to submit their applications early and to submit the required supporting documents together with the applications, e.g. a copy of the Foreign Identification Number (FIN) Card and Passport if the applicant/chief editor is a foreigner employed/residing in Singapore.
Permit holders are required to adhere to the conditions of the Newspaper Permit. Please click here for the list of permit conditions (13.50KB). Permit holders are also required to adhere to special conditions and guidelines issued together with the Newspaper Permit, where applicable.
The Permit holders shall notify the Registrar of Newspapers any changes in the publisher or the printer of the newspaper no later than 7 days after the change has become effective. Updates of changes to the publisher and printer of the newspaper can submitted via the links below.
Please call 1800 478 5478 or email IMDA for feedback.