Important dates for your Hong Kong company

Important dates for your Hong Kong company

As a business owner, you already have a lot of things to think about and some administrative deadlines, for example, when to fill in your tax return or to notify authorities about your new company secretary, may easily slip your mind.

To help you out, we’ve a prepared a list of important dates that worth getting marked in your calendar:

1. The date of Hong Kong company registration

The date when your business in Hong Kong became legal is important for three reasons:

a. Annual return

Every private Hong Kong company has to deliver an annual return to the Company Registry within 42 days after the most recent anniversary of the date of its registration. The annual return shows your company’s particulars, such as directors, shareholders, secretary, registered address, business license, etc. Please note that, except for your company’s first year, the return should be submitted every year while your business exists, even if the information from your last return hasn’t been updated. Also, remember that return should be submitted even if your company hasn’t been active. Upon submission you’ll need to pay annual registration fee, which is currently HK 105. However, if you fail to deliver annual return in time, the fee will be much higher and you’ll run a risk of legal prosecution.

b. Renewal of your business registration certificate

You’ll receive a registration renewal demand note about one month before the anniversary date of your company, which is also the expiration date of your business license. You’ll have one month to pay. Upon payment this demand note will become your new registration certificate.

Business registration certificates in Hong Kong can be issued for 1 year or 3 years. By the way, a good news – starting from April 2019 the fee for 1-year business registration is only HKD 250!

c. Annual General Meeting (AGM)

You should hold the first Annual General Meeting to present financial statements to your shareholders within 18 months after the company registration date.

2. Company’s fiscal year-end date

You are free to choose any date of the year as your company’s fiscal year-end, it doesn’t need to correlate with your registration date. Most of the companies choose the end of calendar year, December 31, or the end of Hong Kong government’s fiscal year, March 31. But you are free to pick up another date depending on your business needs. For example, if the headquarter of your company is based in Australia, you can choose 30 June, the end of Australian fiscal year.

3. 31 March – end of Hong Kong fiscal year

March 31 is a very important date for every taxpayer in Hong Kong, whether you are an individual or a corporate. As an owner of Hong Kong business or an offshore business sourcing profit from Hong Kong, you’ll certainly hear about profits tax. The profits tax applies to all your corporate profits arisen in or derived from Hong Kong. The current standard rate is 16.5% with the first 2 million HKD of assessable profits taxed at half the current rate – 8.25%. Profits tax return will be issued by the Hong Kong tax authority (Inland Revenue Department – IRD) the first working day of April of the following year of assessment. The notice for a newly incorporated business is issued around the 18th month after its registration. You’ll have then one month to file the return attaching the following documents:
  • Tax computation displaying your assessable profits
  • Auditor’s report, balance sheet and Loss & Profits account related to the basis period
The IRD will then calculate your provisional profits tax and send a payment notice. You’ll need to pay your tax according to instructions, generally the deadline is between November (current year) and April (next year). The tax should be paid in two instalments – the first instalment is 75% and the second one is 25% (payable after three months). If your Hong Kong company has employees, keep in mind that the same deadlines apply to your employer’s return of their remuneration and pensions.

4. The dates of changes of Hong Kong company particulars

Within 15 days after the change you should notify Company Registry about:
  • Change of directors and shareholders. For example, a new director came on board or one of the shareholders ceased his activity
  • Change of company address
  • Change of particulars of the directors and secretary, for example, a new passport or a new address
  • Change of the business statutory or lawful books
  • Change of company name
Within one month after the change you should notify Company Registry about:
  • Issue or allotment of new shares
Within one month after the change you should notify IRD about:
  • Change of company address
Please contact us if you wish to know more about Hong Kong company maintenance and compliance requirements.