How To Set Up Company In Hong Kong and pay 0% corporate tax

Hong Kong has long been a magnet for businesses and entrepreneurs, thanks to its strong banking infrastructure, business-friendly environment, and a history of trust and stability. For high-net-worth individuals seeking to optimise their financial strategies, Hong Kong is an attractive destination. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the intricacies of establishing a company in Hong Kong, encompassing the key steps, compliance requirements, taxation nuances, and the benefits and challenges associated with doing business in this dynamic region.

The Appeal of Hong Kong

Before delving into the process of setting up a company in Hong Kong, it's essential to understand why this jurisdiction is so alluring for entrepreneurs, investors, and corporations alike.
  • Financial Hub:
    Hong Kong boasts a world-class financial sector, making it an ideal destination for businesses seeking access to capital, investment opportunities, and international financial markets.
  • Stability and Trust:
    With a history of political stability, rule of law, and a commitment to protecting property rights, Hong Kong has gained the trust of global investors.
  • Business-Friendly:
    The Hong Kong government is renowned for its pro-business policies, low taxation, and minimal bureaucracy, providing an environment conducive to business growth.
  • Strategic Location:
    Situated at the crossroads of Asia, Hong Kong serves as a strategic gateway for companies looking to expand into the Asian market.

Setting Up Your Company in Hong Kong

Setting up a company in Hong Kong involves a series of steps and compliance requirements. Let's break down the process:
  • 1
    Company Name Approval:
    The first step is to ensure that your desired company name is available and compliant with Hong Kong regulations. This involves submitting an application to the designated authorities for approval.
  • 2
    Once your company name is approved, you'll need to complete various forms and disclose information about shareholders and directors. This documentation will be submitted to Hong Kong authorities for further approval.
  • 3
    Corporate Secretary:
    Every Hong Kong company must appoint a corporate secretary, who serves as the company's representative on the ground. This role is vital for compliance with regulatory requirements. Corporate secretaries are often appointed annually.
  • 4
    Registered Address:
    Your company must have a physical registered address in Hong Kong to receive official correspondence. Some corporate secretaries offer this service as part of their package.
  • 5
    Record Keeping:
    Hong Kong's audit requirements necessitate meticulous record-keeping. Every receipt and invoice must be maintained in an organised manner. To meet these requirements, hiring an accountant is often advisable.
  • 6
    Bank Account:
    After successfully setting up your company, opening a bank account is the next step. While Hong Kong offers excellent banking opportunities, the paperwork involved can be time-consuming. Many banks require original documents, which may necessitate mailing paperwork if you're not physically present.

Understanding Hong Kong's Taxation Regime

Hong Kong's tax system is a key attraction for businesses and investors. Here's a breakdown of the taxation nuances:
  • Corporate Tax: Hong Kong imposes a corporate tax rate of 8.25% on the first HKD2M of net profit (approx USD255K) and 16.5% on the remainder of net profit. However, this tax is only applicable to revenue derived from Hong Kong sources.
  • Offshore Profit Tax Claim: Businesses can benefit from a 0% tax rate on offshore income. To qualify, companies must meet specific criteria, including having no income from Hong Kong clients and directors spending limited time in Hong Kong.
  • No Sales in Hong Kong: Businesses claiming the offshore profit tax exemption must refrain from conducting sales activities in Hong Kong.
  • No Physical Office: To qualify for the offshore profit tax exemption, companies cannot maintain a physical office in Hong Kong.
Meeting Audit Requirements
Hong Kong companies are required to undergo annual audits. Under Company Ordinance the deadline is within nine months after the company's financial year end. Typically, audits can take three to six months, and close coordination with auditors and the submission of necessary documents are essential. Additionally, obtaining Bank Confirmation Letters, especially from international banks, can be time-consuming.
Benefits and Challenges
Establishing a company in Hong Kong offers numerous benefits, including access to a robust financial sector, strategic location, and favourable tax regime. However, it also comes with challenges, such as the need for meticulous record-keeping, compliance with audit requirements, and adherence to offshore profit tax criteria.


In conclusion, setting up a company in Hong Kong is an attractive proposition for high-net-worth individuals and businesses seeking to optimise their financial strategies. With a business-friendly environment, strategic location, and favourable tax policies, Hong Kong continues to be a top choice for international entrepreneurs. However, navigating the compliance requirements and taxation nuances requires careful planning and adherence to regulations. For those willing to put in the effort, the opportunities in Hong Kong are abundant, making it a premier destination for business expansion and financial success.