Starting a Business in

Hong Kong SAR, China

Below is a detailed summary of the bureaucratic and legal hurdles faced by entrepreneurs wishing to incorporate and register a new firm in Hong Kong SAR, China. It examines the procedures, time and cost involved in launching a commercial or industrial firm with between 10 and 50 employees and start-up capital of 10 times the economy's per-capita gross national income.

This information was collected as part of the Doing Business project, which measures and compares regulations relevant to the life cycle of a small- to medium-sized domestic business in 190 economies. The most recent round of data collection was completed in June 2016.

Compare Hong Kong SAR, China to 189 other economies.

  • No. Procedure Time to Complete Associated Costs

    Choose a company name and obtain a certificate of incorporation

    Agency: Companies Registry

    A company name (which may be in English, traditional Chinese or both) can be searched online free of charge at the Companies Registry (www.icris.cr.gov.hk/csci/login_i.do?loginType=iguest&username=iguest ), however the acceptability of a company name can only be confirmed after an application has been processed.

    A certificate of incorporation will be issued upon the filing of an incorporation form signed by the founder member(s) (for companies limited by shares this is a Form NNC1), a copy of the articles of association and a Notice to Business Registration Office (IRBR1). The incorporation form contains comprehensive information on the address of the registered office and particulars of the first secretary and first directors of a company. Paper submissions for incorporation normally require approximately four working days for the certificate to be issued. On 23 January 2014, the new Companies Ordinance (“the new CO”) abolishes the requirement to have a Memorandum of Association (“MA”) as a constitutional document of a local company. A company incorporated in Hong Kong under the new CO is only required to have Articles of Association (“AA”).

    With the implementation of the "e-Registry" in 2011, applicants can now complete the incorporation and business registration process by submitting electronic applications online to the Companies Registry (www.eregistry.gov.hk). In straightforward cases, this enables registered users to complete the relevant procedures and download the electronic Certificate of Incorporation and Business Registration Certificate within one day.

    Less than one day (online procedure) HKD 1,720 application fee + HKD 250 for business registration levy

    Sign up Employee's Compensation Insurance and Mandatory Provident Fund (MPF) Schemes with a private company or a bank

    Agency: Labour Department; Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority (MPFA)

    Pursuant to the Employees’ Compensation Ordinance (Chapter 282 of the Laws of Hong Kong) ("ECO"), an employer must take out insurance to cover liabilities for his employees (both full- and part-time) who experience accidents arising out of and in the course of employment, and resulting in injuries or fatalities.

    In addition, except for persons exempted from joining a Mandatory Provident Fund (“MPF”) scheme, employers must enroll their regular employees (i.e. employees who are at least 18 but under 65 years of age and employed for 60 days or more) and where applicable, their casual employees (i.e. employees are at least 18 but under 65 years of age and employed in the construction or catering industry on a day-to-day basis or for a fixed period of less than 60 days) in an MPF scheme administered by any MPF approved trustee in Hong Kong and make MPF contributions accordingly. Scheme enrollment can be arranged through MPF registered intermediaries, which include banks and insurance companies.

    The newly incorporated company can apply for setting up the Employee's Compensation Insurance and MPF Scheme anytime after incorporation.

    The procedure can be done online via various private insurance providers’ web portals. However, most businesses prefer to have advisory meeting with insurance service provider rather than reviewing all information online by themselves.

    1 day no charge