Hong Kong, a vibrant city on China’s southern coast, is a blend of Eastern and Western influences. With a history marked by landmarks like Victoria Harbour and the Star Ferry, it’s a cultural melting pot with diverse communities, spiritual places, and culinary delights combining Chinese and Western flavors. Whether you’re exploring museums, temples, or markets, taking in the country parks, or indulging in shopping, Hong Kong offers something for everyone.
In September 2003, the Immigration Department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), which operates under the People’s Republic of China, initiated the Capital Investment Entrant Scheme. Before the scheme’s introduction, individuals looking to secure residency in exchange for investment in HKSAR had to depend on a specific category of the employment visa known as the Employment Visa Based upon Investment in Hong Kong, also referred to as the business investment visa. Although the Capital Investment Entrant Scheme was suspended in 2015, HKSAR continues to provide several alternative residency programs.
Countries not included: nationals of Afghanistan, Cuba, Laos, Korea (Democratic People’s Republic of), Nepal and Vietnam.
- Economic and political steadiness, a strategic position, and its prominence as a major financial and trading hub.
- A mature legal system rooted in English common law with transparent regulations.
- A prominent entry point for commerce and investment in and out of mainland China.
- Boasting the title of the world’s freest economy.
- No constraints on capital movements, allowing the free flow of funds in and out of Hong Kong.
- A resilient and convertible currency pegged to the US dollar.
- A global communications hub, backed by top-notch infrastructure.
- Possessing a world-class international airport and the world’s most bustling container port.
- A tax system that is advantageous for both individuals and businesses.
Requirements for Hong Kong Entrepreneurial Investment Visa:
- No security objection and no known record of serious crime in respect of the applicant.
- A good education background
- The ability to make a substantial contribution to Hong Kong’s economy
Details of Consideration Factors:
- Business Plan: Submission of a two-year business plan
- Business Turnover: If the applicant is running a relevant business overseas or has joined one in Hong Kong, submission of profit-and-loss account statements and balance sheets from the previous year to show business turnover and profit. Those intending to establish a business in Hong Kong should provide a two-year forecast, including anticipated business turnover.
- Investment Sum:
- Number of Jobs Created Locally:
- Introduction of New Technology or Skills (if applicable):
Additional Notes: Start-up businesses may also apply, with favorable consideration if they are supported by government-backed programs with a stringent vetting and selection process, and the applicant is the proprietor, partner, or a key researcher of the project.
While each application is assessed individually, applicants must meet normal immigration requirements and specific eligibility criteria as mentioned above. These criteria are subject to change without prior notice.
Types of Investments and Fees
- The Quality Migrant Admission Scheme (QMAS): Geared towards highly skilled or talented individuals who intend to settle in Hong Kong and contribute to its economic growth.
- Entrepreneurial Investment: Intended for those interested in establishing or participating in businesses as entrepreneurs in HKSAR under the General Employment Policy.
The fees involved for residence by investment in Hong Kong are as follows:
The fees involved in a Hong Kong residence by investment program vary depending on the type of program you choose and the specific investment you make. However, there are some general fees that you can expect to pay, such as:
Application fee: This is a non-refundable fee that is charged by the Hong Kong government for processing your application. The fee is currently HK$6,000 (approximately USD$760).
Investment fee: This is the amount of money that you will need to invest in Hong Kong in order to qualify for the program. The investment requirement varies depending on the type of program you choose. For example, the Capital Investment Entrant Scheme requires a minimum investment of HK$10 million (approximately USD$1.3 million).
Professional fees: You will also need to pay professional fees to lawyers, accountants, and other advisors who can help you with your application and investment. These fees can vary depending on the complexity of your case.
In addition to these general fees, there may be other costs associated with the program, such as:
Accommodation: If you are moving to Hong Kong, you will need to find a place to live. The cost of accommodation in Hong Kong can be very high, especially in the city center.
Cost of living: The cost of living in Hong Kong is also very high. You will need to budget for things like food, transportation, and utilities.
Taxes: You will be liable for Hong Kong taxes on your income and assets. The tax rates in Hong Kong are relatively low, but they can still be significant.
What is the Overarching Employment Policy?
The General Employment Policy (GEP) delineates the entry prerequisites for professionals intending to enter or extend their stay in the HKSAR.
Subject to the following conditions, individuals possessing unique, valuable talents, knowledge, or experience not typically found in Hong Kong can seek employment under the GEP:
The candidate boasts a strong educational foundation, usually holding a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field, and a valid job vacancy exists.
The applicant holds a confirmed job offer in a role directly aligned with their educational qualifications or work experience, which cannot be filled by the local workforce or current Hong Kong tax residents.
The compensation package, encompassing salary, housing, medical benefits, and other supplementary perks, is essentially in line with prevailing market standards for professionals in Hong Kong.
Is it necessary for me to pay taxes in Hong Kong?
In Hong Kong, taxation follows a territorial source concept. Corporations are taxed at a 17.5% rate on profits earned within the territory. Notably, dividends, interest, and capital gains are tax-exempt, while a 5.25% withholding tax applies to royalties for non-resident recipients not linked to the payers; for related parties, the rate is 16.5%. Hong Kong-incorporated companies are ideal for global trade or consultancy without a local presence, allowing tax-free operations. Real estate ownership outside Hong Kong is also tax-exempt. Hong Kong has no capital gains tax, and dividends received or distributed by local corporations are not taxed. The standard profits tax rate for Hong Kong-sourced income, at 16.5%, is competitive.
What documents do I need to apply for the Hong Kong investment visa?
Individuals can apply for an Investment Visa.
All of the necessary paperwork for the visa application process are listed below:
- The application Form ID999A, along with the necessary information.
- A duplicate of your passport. If the applicant is in Hong Kong, supply the page with the most recent immigration entrance stamp or landing slip.
- If applicable, a copy of the Hong Kong identity card.
- A copy of the applicant’s financial situation or verification of it. Consider a recent bank statement.
- A copy of any applicable diploma, certificate, or proof of abilities and credentials.
- A copy of the Company’s Employment Contract outlining your position, salary, and other perks.
- A detailed two-year business plan should include all information about your company’s anticipated business activities, investment amount, and establishment of local job postings. It is advised to offer proof, such as screenshots, of the online job advertisement with the particular responsibilities and job descriptions, as well as any other supporting materials.
- A copy of the Business Registration Certificate issued by the Inland Revenue Department, as well as other business registration details and personal information pertaining to the Hong Kong company registration.
- A copy of the applicant’s address and proof of overseas residency.
Make Hong Kong your second home
7,498,100 (mid-year estimate)
GDP (per capita):
GDP (purchasing power parity):
Capital city: Victoria
Time zone: China Standard Time (CST) UTC+8
Total area: 1,104 square kilometers
Languages: Chinese (official), English (official)
Currency: Hong Kong dollar (HKD)
Main industry: Services (93.4%), manufacturing (2.4%), construction (2.1%)
Schengen/EU: Hong Kong is not part of the Schengen Area or the European Union.
- Economic opportunities: Hong Kong is a global financial center and a major trading hub. It has a strong economy with low unemployment and high wages. There are many opportunities for people of all skill levels in Hong Kong.
- High standard of living: Hong Kong has a high standard of living, with access to quality healthcare, education, and infrastructure. The city is also very safe and clean.
- Vibrant culture: Hong Kong is a melting pot of cultures, with people from all over the world living and working together. The city is home to a variety of temples, mosques, and churches, as well as a thriving arts and culture scene.
The materials contained in this page are provided for general information purposes only and are not intended to provide legal or other professional advice. Processing times and costs will vary depending on a number of factors. CitizenMatch is not responsible for any changes to the time and cost estimates; we can provide specific information on an individual basis. All rights reserved.