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Exploring Business Immigration Opportunities in Hong Kong

25 February 2017

Exploring Business Immigration Opportunities in Hong Kong
Residency by Investment Programs have gained a great deal of popularity in Canada and across Europe in the last few years. However, wealthy foreign investors seeking business immigration opportunities abroad are now looking farther east: Hong Kong.

What is the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa?

Through the Hong Kong Residency Program, entrepreneurs and business-minded men and women can enter Hong Kong’s dynamic economy through a variety of investment options. In exchange for their investment, eligible applicants and their dependents can obtain a temporary residency visa that can lead to permanent residence in Hong Kong.

Facts about Hong Kong’s economic infrastructure

Although Hong Kong is considered a part of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), the high degree of Hong Kong’s autonomy is strengthened by its role as China’s main hub for imports and exports between the two economic systems.

So why invest in Hong Kong? Hong Kong’s economy is one of the largest and most competitive business centers in the world. According to the 2017 Index of Economic Freedom, the efficiency of Hong Kong’s financial and business districts is supported by its sound legal structure, transparency, and low-tolerance policy for governmental corruption. With this combination, foreign investors applying for the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa are provided a solid foundation to establish or expand their business in a region regarded as a reliable economic powerhouse.

In addition to economic prowess, Hong Kong’s tax regulations are hard to beat. Income sourced outside of Hong Kong is not subject to taxation, nor does Hong Kong impose estate, capital gains, or sales taxes on residents. For individual tax rates, Hong Kong ranks at one of the lowest in the world at 15%, with the total tax burden just under 14.5% for overall domestic income.

Investment options for the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa

One of the main benefits of Hong Kong’s economy is the degree of business freedom foreign investors can enjoy. Through the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa, candidates have five options to consider, detailed below:
  1. Establishing or joining in Hong Kong business, which includes submitting a two-year business plan stating the nature of the business, market analysis, market positioning, business direction, sales targets, product marketing strategy, etc.; OR,
     
  2. If the applicant is running relevant business overseas or has joined a business in Hong Kong, he or she must submit the profit-and-loss account statement and balance sheet showing the business turnover and profit in the previous year for existing businesses; OR,
     
  3. Those who intend to establish business in Hong Kong should submit a two-year forecast of profit-and-loss account statement and balance sheet, including the anticipated business turnover; OR,
     
  4. Introducing new technology or skills, whereby the applicant can inspire creativity in the high-value-added industries in Hong Kong, and whether he or she has taken out patent(s) that contribute to the long-term development of Hong Kong as a knowledge-based economy; OR,
     
  5. Establish or join in a start-up business if it is supported by a government-backed program (subject to rigorous vetting and selection process) and the applicant is the proprietor or partner of the start-up company or a key researcher of the relevant project.
 
It’s important to note that investment amounts for the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa are not fixed, but relative to the economic benefit of the business being established. During application processing, the Immigration Department will closely examine the business plan to assess if your proposed investment is sufficient for the business you plan to set up.
 
Benefits of the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa
 
For starters, the amount of time it takes to process the application is 4-8 weeks, which provides successful candidates and their immediate family fast-track residency in Hong Kong. Residency is initially obtained for two years and can be renewed for three years thereafter, with the option of applying for permanent residency (or “Right to Abode”) after a period of seven consecutive years. However, applicants are not required to physically reside in Hong Kong for a minimum amount of days throughout the year. Similar to its economic policies, Hong Kong grants visa holders a great deal of freedom to conduct business in and beyond the region.
 
In short, the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa is a great way for immigrant investors to explore one of the world’s strongest economies while enjoying a number of freedoms. Contact our offices today to discuss the best immigration opportunities for you and your family.
 
For more information on the Hong Kong Entrepreneur Visa, please click here.
 
Fill out our Free Assessment to see if you qualify for any of the immigration programs offered.
 
 

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