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To set up a business  in Hong Kong an investor may apply to one of the following legal forms of business:

·      Sole proprietorship;

·      Limited Partnership;

·      Private company limited by shares;

·      Company  limited by guarantee;

·      Public company limited by shares;

·      Place of business.

Depending on which of the above forms has been chosen new business start-up is subject to registration in one of two different registration systems: Companies Registry or Business Registration Office. 

The Companies Registry is responsible for the registration of Hong Kong companies and overseas companies caring out business in Hong Kong through its separate local division. The Companies Registry affairs and daily activity is governed by the Companies Ordinance (Cap. 622).

Business Registration Office is a unit of  Hong Kong Inland Revenue Department  regulated by the Business Registration Ordinance (Cap. 310). This unit is in charge for registration of business activity of any kind carried within the territory of Hong Kong either by individuals or corporate bodies.

For the purposes of this article  the term "business activity" means any form of commercial and non-commercial activity in Hong Kong as to: sole proprietorship, partnership, leasing out of  real estate owned by oversea company  irrespective of whether or not such  a company has a Place of business in Hong Kong. Hong Kong companies must be registered with Business Registration Office notwithstanding of whether such activity is conducted within or outside Hong Kong.