Hong Kong combines various incentives suitable for international companies to set up companies in Hong Kong, such as strategic location, free flow of information and goods, easy-to-apply business licenses and permits, unrestricted capital flow and communication. This makes Hong Kong a leading international market and financial center for many entrepreneurs. As of the end of 2020, the total number of Hong Kong company registrations reached 1,387,919, and the total number of newly established Hong Kong companies in 2020 was 99,405.
1. Hong Kong company environment profile
- Hong Kong is one of the two special administrative regions of the People’s Republic of China, and Hong Kong is the core of Hong Kong’s development; its economy grew rapidly in the late 20th century and gradually developed into a modern international metropolis with an important position in the Asia-Pacific region, mainly industrial and commercial, and international finance center.
|Location||Located at the southern end of mainland China, on the north bank of the South China Sea, on the east side of the Pearl River Estuary, facing Macau and Zhuhai City in Guangdong Province across the Pearl River to the west, Shenzhen City in Guangdong Province in the north, and the South China Sea in the south. Located in the center of the countries along the western Pacific Ocean, it is also a key point for shipping in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. The whole territory consists of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and the New Territories; geographically , it consists of mainland lands such as the Kowloon Peninsula, and 263 islands.|
|Population||The current population is approximately 7,496,981.|
|Languages||The official languages are Chinese and English, while Cantonese, Mandarin and English are spoken languages.|
|Legal System||Hong Kong’s legal system is based on the original common law system, supplemented by statutory law.|
|Foreign Exchange Control||NIL|
|Economics||Hong Kong’s economy is a free-market economic system that is highly dependent on international trade. As the world’s most dominant economy in the service industry, the trade and logistics industry (the added value of this industry accounted for 21.2% of GDP in 2018), the financial services industry (19.8%), Professional services, and other industrial and commercial support services (11.9%) and tourism (4.5%) are the four traditional main industries of the Hong Kong economy.|
|Main Legal Regulation||Hong Kong’s company law is the Companies Ordinance|
2. The advantages and functions of Hong Kong company registration
- Hong Kong is often used to invest in holding companies in China/Vietnam/Indonesia/Taiwan, etc. It is easy to set up and the company document certification is relatively simple and fast, and the image of Hong Kong business is better, and it can apply for a trademark application.
3. How to register a Hong Kong company? What documents need to be prepared?
- The most common type of foreign company establishment is a limited liability company (LIMITED), also known as a private/public limited company in Hong Kong. All members will own the company’s shares and limited liability, thereby protecting personal assets from liability and business risks. The company registration must provide the following information or documents:
- HK registered capital: The share capital of a company established in Hong Kong can be registered in US dollars or Hong Kong dollars. There is no limit to the amount of registered capital of a company. The common standard registered capital is HKD10,000.
- Company name: The company must choose a name. The company name can be in English or both English and Chinese. After the query, if the name is not repeated, you can register the company name.
- Company secretary: A Hong Kong holding company must be appointed as the legal secretary to assist in the local handling of company-related data changes and affairs such as annual declarations.
- Registered address: HK company registration requires a registered address, which can be provided by the secretary company.
- Director and shareholders: At least one shareholder/director’s valid certificate copy is required. Company shareholders must provide a copy of company documents, such as a certificate of Incorporation, Certificate of Incumbency, used to show directors, shareholders and UBO (ultimate beneficial owner) related files and the above personal files.
- Information on the nature of the company business and its related information. A newly established Hong Kong company can complete company registration within about 10 working days after completing the application process. At that time, you can obtain complete documents such as company registration license/formation/business registration certificate/articles/company seal/certified original company documents.
4. Tax regulations of Hong Kong companies
- The tax law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is derived from the common law of the United Kingdom, so it adopts the practice of tax exemption for foreign income. The basic tax of Hong Kong companies is 16.5% profits tax, which is levied based on the principle of geographical origin. Only profits derived from Hong Kong are taxed in Hong Kong, while profits derived from other places are not subject to profits tax in Hong Kong. Whether the profit is generated in Hong Kong is determined by the nature of the profit and the nature of the transaction that generated the profit. The general overseas tax exemption principles are as follows:
- Suppliers and customers are not local companies in Hong Kong.
- The order signing process does not occur in Hong Kong.
- The goods have not been declared, received, or shipped in Hong Kong.
- The registered Hong Kong company does not have a physical office in Hong Kong and nor hire Hong Kong employees.
- No business records are kept in the Hong Kong government.
5. Matters needing attention in the operation of Hong Kong company
|Hong Kong company naming rules||Hong Kong company business scope||Registered capital of Hong Kong company|
- Hong Kong company naming rules: The name of the registered Hong Kong company is free to choose. The “company name” is allowed to contain regional and industry characteristics, such as China, Hong Kong, the United States, France, international…/College, association, group, holding, industry, investment, fund… etc., The English name must end with the full name. (Such as Limited, Group…)
- Hong Kong company business scope: There are no special restrictions on the scope of business established by a Hong Kong company. Any industry in Hong Kong can become a business scope. A Hong Kong company can operate any business in Hong Kong, except illegal business.
- The registered capital of Hong Kong company: There is no limit on the amount of registered capital of a Hong Kong company and the amount of capital does not need to be in place. However, if the company’s equity is transferred or sold, a stamp duty of two-thousandths of the share capital is required. Inter Area provides customers with Hong Kong company registration and extends integration services to bank account opening assistance, international accountant/lawyer verification, document changes, Hong Kong audit reports… etc., which can provide customers with substantial needs.
- Inter Area has professionals who are familiar with overseas affairs, from planning, registration, actual operation cases, and relevant precautions and the latest information to provide customers with the most complete, fast, and secure service. The focus is on the background and purpose of customers’ practical investment. Different products and services produce new experiences and determine future value.