Bank Accounts in Hong Kong
Hong Kong is the city with the highest concentration of banking institutions in the world; 70 of the largest 100 banks in the world have their operations in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong maintains a three-tier banking system, namely, licensed banks, restricted license banks and deposit-taking companies. Only licensed banks may open current and savings accounts for the public.
Benefits of having a corporate bank account in Hong Kong
- Multi-currency accounts (USD, EUR, HKD, GBP, CNY, etc.)
- Online banking facilities 24 hours / 7 days
- No foreign exchange control
- Strong bank secrecy/financial privacy
- Low fees for international transfers
What you need to know to open an account for a business
Preliminary review is available.
Proof of Business: you are required to present evidence of the nature of business, experience in the industry, relationships with local Hong Kong and Mainland China businesses (including contracts and agreements, issued and received invoices, bill of landing, business plan description, information of suppliers and buyers, business brochure and website).
Personal documents: all directors and shareholders (more than 10% of the share capital) shall present their passports; residency proof (utility bills / tax demand notes mailed from Government, bank statements / reference issued within the last 2 months); source of wealth proof documents (latest 3 months of personal bank statements.); CV.
Nominee Shareholders and Directors: not advisable.
English language: if the original documents aren’t in English, a certified copy translated into English is required.
Appointment in Hong Kong: if the preliminary review is passed, all directors and shareholders need to attend a bank account interview in Hong Kong.
Minimum balance: you are required to make an initial deposit which differs according to the bank and is subject to change from time to time. Your account balance must always remain above a certain amount (usually around HK$ 30 000) otherwise an additional banking fee will be charged.
Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information (“AEOI”)
AEOI is a new system that involves the exchange of bank account information from Hong Kong to an overseas jurisdiction with which Hong Kong has entered into an agreement.
Common Reporting Standard (CRS) is a global standard for the automatic exchange of financial information between jurisdictions participating in AEOI.
Under the CRS, a bank in Hong Kong is required to determine where its clients (i.e. the company and its beneficiary owners) are tax residents, meaning where they are liable to pay profit and income taxes. To confirm the client’s status under the CRS, the bank may require the completion of self-certification forms and information related to the client’s tax residency. The bank will share that information with the tax authorities of other jurisdictions where the clients are tax residents.
You can view updated information about the activated exchange relationship for CRS participating jurisdictions here.