Registration of an offshore company in Hong Kong is not the easiest thing to do, even though it is regulated by friendly corporate legislation. The likelihood that a do-it-yourselfer will succeed is extremely low, so we strongly recommend that you involve competent assistants in the project implementation.
If you want to register an offshore company in Hong Kong and at the same time open an account with a solid European Bank Alpinum (Liechtenstein), you will need strong expert support from the International Wealth portal specialists and the Offshore Pro Group. We have a rich experience in the practical implementation of such cases, but there is one condition: you should follow our advice rather than act independently as one wrong step may ruin everything.
Incorporation of an Offshore Company in Hong Kong
The success of an international business depends on many factors, and one of the most important steps is a competent choice of jurisdiction. There are a lot of options for a new entrepreneur, and they all seem attractive and successful. The classic option (an offshore jurisdiction somewhere in the Caribbean) is not the gold standard by default. The long-term prospects of pure offshores remain unclear, and the benefits of simplified and accelerated company registration are offset by further risks in the business (bank account, blacklists of offshore zones, tax problems in the jurisdiction of your citizenship, etc.).
The alternative option (classic onshore) is not a good choice for starting a business, either, since the company registration, opening an account with a bank and further maintenance of the structure operation will require quite significant financial reserves. In addition, the risks that the bank will refuse to open an account for you are quite high, and the tax transparency rules in force in most onshores will not be suitable for all business people.
But traditional midshores (in simplistic terms – jurisdictions with low (but not zero) taxation) will be fine for offshore company incorporation. There are quite a few midshores nowadays. However, if you are interested in the best choice by overall characteristics rather than individual ones, Hong Kong should be considered first. This is probably the best choice if you want to register an offshore company and conduct legal business in 2022!
The Main Advantages of Business Registration in Hong Kong:
- Liberal corporate laws
- The simplest possible business registration (as compared to other onshores)
- Minimal incorporation costs
- A possibility to manage an offshore company and conduct (manage) business from anywhere in the world
- Officially authorized nominee service
- This is a non-alternative option for offshore companies that are planning to conduct business with a focus on the mainland China market.
- Formal subordination to China does not make Hong Kong an actual part of it. Doing business is not limited by any political motives, so the registration of an offshore company here in the short- and mid-term is a profitable and justified step.
- You can open an account with a bank of any suitable jurisdiction, not only in Hong Kong.
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on which jurisdiction is best for your business, preferred tax regime, company structure.
Registration of an Offshore Company in Hong Kong – Basic Facts
The requirements for business incorporation are modest, but the basic conditions must be taken into account with full responsibility. In theory, it is possible to open a corporate account with a bank in Hong Kong along with the company’s registration, but we decided to offer you an interesting alternative – Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein.
This “cocktail” gives you an opportunity to take full advantage of doing business in Hong Kong and benefit from opening an account with a bank of a solid European jurisdiction. But we will talk about this in the second part of the article.
Important facts about business registration in Hong Kong (basic requirements and terms of incorporation):
- Shareholders. An offshore company in Hong Kong with limited liability (in general, any private company) must have at least 1 shareholder. There are no requirements for resident status.
- Directors. At least 1 director (a natural person if there is only one director). There are no requirements for resident status/citizenship.
- Company secretary. He must be a permanent resident of Hong Kong. The main duties of the offshore company’s secretary include keeping records, ensuring the relevance of corporate documents and compliance with the law, and monitoring compliance with Hong Kong corporate legislation.
- Taxes. Our experts will tell you about all the features of Hong Kong’s fiscal policy. But before setting up an offshore company in Hong Kong, you should understand the main points that directly affect the business. They include the basic corporate tax rate of 16.5%, the territorial tax system, a possibility to achieve zero tax payments in some cases, discounts and preferences for new offshore companies (and not only them).
- Ongoing Compliance. Registering an offshore company in Hong Kong and opening a corporate account for it with Bank Alpinum (Liechtenstein) is only half of the success. It is essential to remember that business in Hong Kong must be regularly audited (by a certified accountant). If your offshore company is just starting up in Hong Kong, we are ready to provide this service (subject to an additional fee).
Documents for Registration of an Offshore Company in Hong Kong
Please note, dear readers, that we will not be able to provide a complete and exhaustive list of the necessary information. The fact is that additional documents may be requested when you set up a company (especially when you open an account with a bank), and this is especially true if you are a citizen of a country under sanctions. That is why we strongly recommend that you work with our experts in advance on all issues related to business registration in Hong Kong.
The minimum package of documents for submission to the Hong Kong Companies Register includes:
- Articles of Association
- Registration form for an offshore company in Hong Kong (see the details below).
Formally, no more documents are required. In fact, the list can be much longer as all the “trifles” (which are not really trifles) are concentrated in the second item – the registration form of an offshore company in Hong Kong. This is where the most questions arise when you incorporate a company:
Information to be specified in the registration form:
- Name of the offshore company. It is highly recommended to prepare several backup options if the main one is occupied or rejected.
- Legal address of the offshore company. On the whole, you can use the agent’s address. But if you are planning serious business, a full-fledged substance will be a much more profitable solution in the long run.
- Description of an offshore company (its business). Information is presented in a free form, but make sure the wording is not too sophisticated. Everything must be stated as clearly as possible, without unnecessary information. Keep in mind that your information will be reviewed.
- Details of Officers of the offshore company. The corporate law of Hong Kong lists directors, shareholders and a secretary as the company’s officers. If the directors and/or shareholders are not residents of Hong Kong, additional personal documents will be required. If they are locals, just a standard ID will do. If an offshore company in Hong Kong has corporate shareholders, you will need some information about the parent company.
- Documented level of responsibility borne by the offshore company’s director in Hong Kong. If you use a nominee service, be sure to discuss this with our experts.
- Details on the share capital of an offshore company in Hong Kong.
Please provide documents in English only to register a business in Hong Kong. If this is not the case, be sure to translate all the documents and certify them with a notary!
Other aspects to be considered:
- The positions of director and shareholder can be combined.
- Formally, the concept of minimum share capital is not used in the context of offshore company registration in Hong Kong. But if you want to increase the chance of your request to open a corporate account (with Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein) being accepted, the minimum amount should not be lower than HKD 10,000.
- You must have a registered address. Let’s emphasize once more that the best option is a full substance.
- If the company secretary is a legal entity, it should have an office in Hong Kong.
- The designated representative (DR) of an offshore company in Hong Kong is a mandatory position. His task is to help the business in connection with the requirements of the Significant Controllers Register (SCR).
- An offshore company can be registered in Hong Kong using Chinese or English (but not their combination!).
- Standard registration of an offshore company in Hong Kong takes 7-10 business days.
- The client’s presence during the company registration is not necessary but possible (if you want to control all stages of the procedure).
- As soon as your business has been successfully registered, you will be entitled to hire workers, but you will have to take care of their visa support.
- You can personally manage the affairs of an offshore company, but you will have to obtain a special investor visa (we can provide such a service upon your request).
The Cost of Incorporating an Offshore Company in Hong Kong
If we cross out the opening of an account with a bank in Liechtenstein, the cost of business registration will amount to at least USD 2,640. You will have to spend another USD 1,625 a year later to extend the offshore company operation in Hong Kong.
Approximate estimate for offshore business registration in Hong Kong (at least USD 2,640):
- Company incorporation (including payment of all state fees in Hong Kong, execution of documents and seals for your offshore business) – USD 1,200
- Registered secretary of an offshore company – USD 350 per year
- The registered (legal) address of an offshore company in Hong Kong – USD 350 per year
- Creating a register of the company’s key controlling persons – USD 350
- A representative for keeping and updating the register of key controlling persons – USD 390 per year
Approximate calculation of the price for annual extension of offshore business in Hong Kong (from USD 1,625):
- The state fee for the company license renewal – USD 300
- Submission of an annual report on the company’s corporate structure – USD 235
- Services of a company’s registered secretary – USD 350
- Legal (registered) address – USD 350
- Representative for keeping and updating the register of key controlling persons – USD 390
Bank Alpinum (Liechtenstein)
The second stage that we have to go through focuses on the issues related to financial services. Despite successful cooperation with many banks, we usually recommend Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein to customers who are interested in the registration of an offshore company in Hong Kong.
The main benefits of Liechtenstein are:
- Its advantageous geographical location practically in the heart of Europe
- Extremely high reputation. If you consider that the registration of an offshore company in Hong Kong is a high-status service in itself, you get a unique combination of business + bank, all at an affordable price.
- Stability in all spheres of life
- A developed financial sector
- Focus on the innovative economy
- Well-thought-out legislation
The main advantages of Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein include:
- Years of impeccable work history
- Collaboration with the most demanding customers across Europe
- The bank belongs to three families, so customer service at Bank Alpinum has a noticeable home feel
- Impeccable reputation
- Exceptional level of stability
- The annual turnover of the parent holding company exceeds USD 1.1 billion
Basic Services of Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein
They are extremely diverse: both individuals and businesses will find interesting offers. If you want to learn more about the bank’s activities, please contact our experts and ask them any questions. This material only focuses on the most important information related to offshore company registration in Hong Kong.
Opening an account with Bank Alpinum: customer requirements (transactional accounts):
- Minimum turnover – from CHF 500,000 a quarter
- The minimum balance is from CHF 250,000 (permanent condition)
- The offshore company is domiciled in a “clean” jurisdiction (compliance with FATF requirements, no sanctions)
- LP structure other than Anglo-American
- The offshore company does not carry out USD transactions
- The offshore company is not involved in unwanted business transactions
If you do not comply with any item, it will be impossible to open a corporate account for a company in Hong Kong at Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein!
According to the bank, the following are high-risk business areas:
- Organization of gambling
- Unregulated financial services outside the EU if third-party funds are involved
- Business lending and assignment of claims (cession)
- Services for adults (XXX category)
- Consulting/agency services
- Software development, IT business
- Digital marketing, traffic exchange, search engine optimization services
- Trade in arms, military equipment and dual-use goods
Opening an account with Bank Alpinum (Liechtenstein) requires you to fill in the Application for transaction account form in advance, and its consideration will cost CHF 5,000 (money is deposited before the application is considered)!
Tariffs for Bank Alpinum Services in Liechtenstein
The account for an offshore company in Hong Kong will be opened after (and if!) the bank’s compliance department approves a full set of documents and banking forms. The bank in Liechtenstein will then send the remaining original documents to the client along with a formal letter of account opening for business in Hong Kong and documents to enter the electronic banking system.
Basic conditions for opening a corporate account with Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein, settlement account services:
- Opening an account, processing an application – CHF 5,000
- The minimum balance (valid in the Bank of Liechtenstein on a permanent basis) – CHF 250,000
- Account maintenance for an offshore company in Hong Kong (per year) – CHF 1,500
- Incoming and outgoing payments (bank rate for high-risk countries) – 0.2%, but no less than CHF 100
Basic conditions for opening a corporate account with Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein, interest rates on debit balances in the following currencies:
- CHF, EUR – 8%
- JPY – 9%
- GBP, CAD – 10%
- USD, AUD – 11%
Basic conditions for opening a corporate account with Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein, negative interest rates on credit balances:
- CHF 250,000 – 0.75%
- EUR 250,000 – 0.50%
Basic conditions for opening a corporate account with Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein, available currencies:
- CHF is the main currency of the account
- European currencies: EUR, CZK, DKK, GBP, HUF, ISK, NOK, PLN, RUR, SEK
- Asian currencies: HKD, JPY, SGD, AUD, NZD
- African currencies: ZAR
- Additionally: CAD, MXN, ILS, TRL, AED
Jurisdictions where outgoing payments in USD are not available if they are made through Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- British Virgin Islands
- Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
- Sudan (North, South)
- Northern Sudan
Documents for Opening a Corporate Account with Bank Alpinum (Liechtenstein)
It is worth noting at once that you can open an account remotely and there is no need to visit the bank. But we understand that some readers may want to personally control the process. We are ready to help you here (in the same way we can provide assistance with the registration of an offshore company in Hong Kong), especially considering the fact that Liechtenstein is a very beautiful country to visit as a tourist.
The first deposit must be credited before (!) the bank in Liechtenstein decides to open an account!
You should not be worried about opening an account with Bank Alpinum as the project is in good hands. Therefore, you can take a car and go on a tour of Liechtenstein while we are doing the work for you. Vaduz and Gutenberg Castles, Government House, Stadle Street, Cathedral, Three Sisters Mountain – there is a lot to see here. Well, we’ve got a little off-topic…
Mind that if the language of the documents is different from English or German, they must be translated and notarized!
A set of corporate documents required to open a corporate account for an offshore company in Hong Kong (* – an original or a certified copy is required, ** – a simple copy will do):
- Certificate of Incorporation*
- Certificate of Director Appointment*
- Certificate of Registered Office in Hong Kong*
- Share certificate*
- Certificate of Good Standing (in Hong Kong)
- Certificate of Incumbency (if the company has existed for more than 1 year)
- Minutes of the General Meeting and the Articles and Memorandum of Association of the legal entity/structure or By-Laws**
- Declaration of Trust/Trust Deed** if you use a nominee service
A set of personal documents to open an account for an offshore company in Hong Kong (for the signatories of the account):
- Foreign passport with an apostille, pages with a signature, and a good-quality photo (a copy, notarization is mandatory)
- Power of Attorney (if your offshore company in Hong Kong is managed under a power of attorney)
A set of personal documents to open an account for an offshore company in Hong Kong (for beneficiaries):
- Foreign passport with an apostille, pages with a signature, and a good-quality photo (notarized copy)
- A completed KYC form provided by Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein or a detailed CV in English
- Reliable information about the source of funds (tax return, income statement, payroll statement, account statements, etc.)
- Confirmation of address if citizenship differs from the place of residence (copy of residence permit/card, utility bill, telephone bill, etc.)
A package of personal documents required to open an account for an offshore company in Hong Kong, other documents:
- A business plan/detailed description of the offshore company’s activities in Hong Kong (1-2 pages in English, in a free form)
- Bank account statements for the last 3 months (if any)
- Financial report for the last two years (preferably signed by the auditor)
- Documents confirming that real business is being conducted by an offshore company in Hong Kong (accounts, contracts, service contracts, etc.)
- Graphical representation of the company structure according to the sample provided
- Scheme of incoming and outgoing payments
Steps Taken to Incorporate an Offshore Company in Hong Kong and Open an Account with Bank Alpinum in Liechtenstein
Now let’s talk about the practical matters of the service we provide.
We have tried to simplify all organizational issues as much as possible without a decrease in quality or an increase in associated risks. If you have any questions that were not answered in this article, please contact our experts for further advice.
Here is a recommended sequence of steps to register an offshore company in Hong Kong and open an account with a bank in Liechtenstein:
- Submission of a request. It does not bind you in any way, but it allows you to assess the very possibility of implementing the project, the approximate level of costs, and the scope of work to be done. The optimal communication channel is e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org), but you can use any alternative one (a complete list of options).
- Discussion of the project. We will listen to your needs and assess the probability of successful service provision. If we can guarantee success and you are satisfied with our terms of cooperation, we issue an invoice for you that can be paid in any convenient way.
- Preparation of a documents package. This stage may require the most attention as you will have to prepare a lot of papers and check their relevance. For our part, we will provide you with any information assistance, so there should be no difficulties here.
- Direct registration of an offshore company in Hong Kong and opening an account with the Bank of Liechtenstein (Bank Alpinum). At this stage, our experts and partners in Hong Kong/Liechtenstein start the practical implementation of the project, and you do not usually have to do anything. If the Registrar in Hong Kong or a bank employee in Liechtenstein requests additional documents, we will immediately get in touch with you.
We can send the package of completed documents to the offshore company by courier service to the address you specified, or we can transfer it at a personal meeting in Hong Kong!
At the end of the procedure, you will become the legal owner of a “zero” offshore company in Hong Kong and a corporate account with Bank Alpinum (Liechtenstein). After that, you can start a real business, choose additional services with the help of our experts, or just walk around Hong Kong and Liechtenstein. Modern Hong Kong differs a lot from patriarchal Liechtenstein steeped in history, but both places are very attractive.
Open a Corporate Investment Account in Hong Kong
Do I need to visit Hong Kong to register a company?
No, we will register the company completely remotely for you. Documents are sent electronically by e-mail and originals are delivered by courier.
How to open an account with a foreign bank quickly?
The speed of opening an account depends on the specific bank, the completeness of the package of documents and even on the workload of bank employees. In most banks, it takes from two weeks to several months. If you need an account faster, take a look at payment systems where you can open an account in just a few days.