Hong Kong is one of the most dynamic regions in the world and is considered one of the best jurisdictions to establish a business. Hong Kong benefits from a light tax system; with low tax rates. Ranked the freest economy in the world between 1995 and 2019, Hong Kong represents the perfect platform to develop its business in Asia and internationally.
To be able to benefit from all these advantages, the first step is to register the company in Hong Kong. To do so, you will need a French-speaking Company Secretary for the creation of your company in Hong Kong. And since 1998, Merritt Asia has been a duly registered Company Secretary in Hong Kong.
Indeed, one of the conditions to be able to register a company and start your activity in the jurisdiction of Hong Kong is to have a Company Secretary. Note that this mandate is mandatory, without it it will not be possible to start your business in Hong Kong.
But what is a Company Secretary?
A Company Secretary is an agent authorized to represent your Hong Kong Company before the Hong Kong authorities.
The missions of a Company Secretary are set by law and he can only act on behalf of the company with the Authorities within the framework of the legal monitoring of the company (tax and social declarations, administrative procedures related to the transfer of shares, change of company name, appointment of a director, etc.). One of the roles of the Company Secretary is to ensure that the business and its operations are managed in accordance with the law.
He does not have access to the company’s bank account and is in no way a director (“manager”) of the company. Our company Merritt Asia Limited is authorized to represent you: we are not resellers but an agent regulated by the Authorities authorized to represent you.
Why is it so important to choose the right Company Secretary?
The Company Secretary is the legal representative of your entity with the local authorities, it is therefore essential to choose him well. Here are some of our skills and the main reasons why you should choose Merritt as Company Secretary.
It is a legal obligation
Choosing a Company Secretary is not an option, it is THE condition for registering a business in Hong Kong. It’s very simple, if you don’t have a Company Secretary your business cannot be registered. You could even be sued by the authorities if you try to conduct business without a Company Secretary. It is therefore in your interest to vigorously choose your Company Secretary even before starting the steps to create your company.
- Your gateway to local administrations
If the Hong Kong administration wants to reach you; the Company Secretary will be their main point of contact. Your Company Secretary is therefore in charge of responding to all requests from the administration and plays a key role as representative and responsible to the authorities.
- Ensure a legal, fiscal and political watch
Your Company Secretary will ensure that your activities comply with local laws and regulations. Regulations as well as policies have been put in place to govern business activities in Hong Kong. A Company Secretary is more than necessary to ensure that your business complies with local corporate, financial and tax particularities. This will prevent your business from coming into conflict with the law.
But other than that, what is the role of a Company Secretary?
Your Company Secretary has many tasks, here are just a few:
Ensure the tax compliance of your company
One of the main tasks of your Company Secretary is to facilitate and ensure the tax compliance of your business. If there is one thing to remember, it is that the administration of Hong Kong is very tax-friendly and the assistance of your Company Secretary will make sure you have nothing to worry about. Here are some of the roles of your Company Secretary:
- Registering the business with the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) after incorporating your company. This step is a priority since it will allow the company to have its details recorded in government archives.
- Request additional authorization that the company may need in tax matters. You will find this role very important when you are faced with complex tax issues that require clarification from the authorities.
- At the end of each financial year, the Corporate Secretary ensures that your company files tax returns correctly and on time. This is very important to make sure you take advantage of tax breaks where applicable and avoid penalties.
Maintain and update the company’s statutory documents
When you set up a business in Hong Kong, the Company Secretary is responsible for keeping all of your company documents. This gives government agencies direct and easy access to all of your company documents when needed. In the event of a tax dispute, for example, the Inland Revenue Department will contact your company’s Company Secretary directly for an inspection of the records.
The Corporate Secretary is responsible for updating all company documents when their details change. For example, if the distribution of shares changes then the Company Secretary will have to update the register of shareholders and directors.
In order to keep shareholders informed of the operations of the company, the Company Secretary is also responsible for creating and sharing various reports.
Connection with the various stakeholders
One of the main missions of your Company Secretary is to liaise with the various stakeholders. In particular, with those whose mandate has an impact on the daily operations of the company. These can include the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, the Department of Internal Revenue and the Company Register … These close relationships allow your Company Secretary to be constantly alert and up to date with political and regulatory developments …
Why choose Merritt as Company Secretary?
Merritt Asia Limited is part of the Merritt network which has offices in Hong Kong, United Arab Emirates and Florida, USA.
We are in charge of the creation and monitoring of companies in Hong Kong as “Company Secretary” since 1998. As explained above, the “Company Secretary” is a mandatory mandate for all companies registered in Hong Kong. Without it, it will not be possible to start your activity.
We provide our clients with all the skills of our group, particularly in terms of legal advice both at our headquarters in Hong Kong and in our offices in Dubai and the USA.
Our human-sized team is made up of legal and accounting professionals who are at your service to ensure the success of your professional activities in Hong Kong and the rest of the world.
Call us +971 52 820 0964 or e-mail us : email@example.com