If you are a Chinese national or resident looking to move to Hong Kong or are actively engaging in business activity within the country, you may want to open a business account.
Before doing so, you will need to explore all your options.
This article outlines exactly what you need to know to open a business bank account in Hong Kong from China.
How can a non-resident open a business bank account in Hong Kong?
Hong Kong is a multicultural city and a major economic center with many expats and foreign nationals, particularly Chinese nationals, due to the city’s strong connection with Mainland China.
Non-residents can easily set up a business bank account in Hong Kong regardless of whether they are staying in the city for a long time or are just visiting for a couple of weeks for business purposes.
While a business bank account is available for non-residents to manage their finances from abroad, the only downside is that non-residents may not be able to benefit from some of the tailored and more advanced banking services generally provided.
If you are looking to open a business bank account in Hong Kong with a foreign corporate entity, be aware that some banks may be reluctant to do so due to Hong Kong’s strict anti-fraud laws.
To prove that there is nothing fishy going on, you may have to attend a face-to-face interview with the bank of your choice to answer questions about your business and its corporate governance and compliance policies.
What are the requirements?
While you don’t need to be a permanent resident to open a business bank account, you will need to hold a Hong Kong ID card if you plan to stay in Hong Kong for longer than 180 days.
You can apply for one at the Registration of Persons Office.
If you want to learn more about applying for a Hong Kong ID card, please take a look at our website.
Alongside a Hong Kong ID, you will need to show your passport, proof of address, valid visa, and other company formation documents.
If you are in Hong Kong for work, your employment contract or a letter from your employer is also required.
Keep in mind that if you have not set up a bank account in Hong Kong, then you may have to visit the bank in person.
A physical visit is required due to the city’s anti-money laundering policies, which call for strict regulation and monitoring.
However, if your bank in China has branches in Hong Kong (which is most likely the case), it will be easier for you to open a business bank account in Hong Kong.
Which documents need to be provided?
In most cases, you will be required to provide the following documents when applying for a business bank account in Hong Kong:
- The original foundation documents of the company.
- Any proof of registration of the company in China.
- The original business registration of the Chinese company’s Hong Kong subsidiary.
- Personal details and documentation of all shareholders and directors of the Chinese company and its Hong Kong subsidiary supported by any evidence requested by the bank of your choice.
- Proof of address in Hong Kong.
- Outline and summarise the Chinese company and its subsidiary’s business and explain all intended activities in Hong Kong.
- Original passports and visa documents of all directors of the Hong Kong entity need to be shown in person by the directors themselves when visiting the bank for an interview.
Choosing a Bank
Multiple banks offer tailored business banking solutions in Hong Kong, especially for non-residents.
However, the best option for you would be to choose a bank that has branches in Hong Kong and China.
This will make transferring money and managing your finances simpler and more convenient.
These include Bank of China, Hang Seng, Citibank, HSBC, and Standard Chartered.
HSBC is a major global bank and one of the largest banks in Hong Kong.
The bank offers two distinct business accounts, including Business Vantage and BusinessVantage
Plus, which can be easily opened after a visit to the bank.
Once all your information and company documents are approved, your business bank account will be set up within a couple of days.
Standard Chartered Bank
Standard Chartered is a leading international bank that operates globally and is based in Hong Kong.
A business account with Standard Chartered allows customers that operate globally to have access to a broad branch with ATM networks across the region.
Hang Seng Bank
Also part of the HSBC group, the Hang Seng Bank is one of the largest local retail banks in Hong Kong.
The bank offers two distinct business accounts to choose from that cater to different corporate entities.
Additionally, Hang Seng Bank offers discounts on their services to those who mainly use their internet banking service.
Bank of China (Hong Kong)
Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited is another leading local bank that offers a broad range of services to businesses regardless of their nature, size, or industry.
When opening a business bank account with the Bank of China, the registration and documentation process can seem quite complicated.
However, the bank’s website provides a clear and concise guideline covering what information needs to be provided to ensure customers that opening a bank account with them will go seamlessly.
Statrys offers business accounts with 11 currencies in one place.
Among that, clients can get currency exchange services including Forward and Spot trades.
Application for a Statrys account doesn't require an in-person appearance in Hong Kong and is done entirely online.
How long does it take?
Opening a business bank account in Hong Kong can take up to two to three weeks once all the required information and identification documents have been submitted following a visit to the bank.
To speed up the process, you should call the bank of your choice in advance and ask for an appointment so you can double-check all the information that needs to be provided prior to your interview to prevent any delays.
Are you looking to open a Hong Kong business bank account from China?
Sign up with Statrys and open your business bank account today.