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Steps to Setting Up Non-profit Organisations in Hong Kong

Updated: Jun 24

Steps to Setting Up Non-profit Organisations in Hong Kong

Here's a breakdown of the steps to set up a non-profit organization (NPO) in Hong Kong:

  1. Choose Your Structure: There are two main structures for NPOs in Hong Kong:

  • Company Limited by Guarantee (CLG): This is a popular choice and functions similarly to a limited company but with profits reinvested into the organization's purpose.

  • Society: This is a simpler structure with less stringent regulations but may not be suitable for all NPOs.

2. Check Name Availability and Conduct Due Diligence:

  • Ensure your chosen NPO name is available through a name check with the Companies Registry.

  • Familiarize yourself with the relevant Hong Kong ordinances such as the Companies Ordinance and the Inland Revenue Ordinance (Section 88 for tax exemption).

3. Prepare Necessary Documents:

  • The specific documents will vary depending on your chosen structure, but generally include:

  • Application form

  • Identity documents of founders/directors

  • Proof of business address

  • Constitution or Articles of Association outlining your NPO's objectives and governance

  • Consent letters from relevant parties (e.g., company secretary, office occupier)

4. Registration Process:

  • Submit the required documents to the Companies Registry. This may involve using their online platform or paper forms.

  • Pay the registration fee (amount varies depending on the number of members).

5. Business Registration:

  • Once incorporated, your NPO needs to register with the Inland Revenue Department for business registration.

6. Compliance and Ongoing Requirements:

  • Maintain good governance practices, including regular audits and transparent financial reporting.

  • File annual returns and comply with tax regulations (even if tax-exempt, filing may still be required).

By following these steps and considering the additional tips, you can increase your chances of successfully setting up your non-profit organization in Hong Kong.

How Bestar can Help

Bestar specializes in NPO formation in Hong Kong. We can provide valuable assistance throughout the process, including:

  • Choosing the Right Structure: We can advise you on the most suitable legal structure (Company Limited by Guarantee or Society) based on your NPO's specific goals and activities.

  • Drafting Essential Documents: Bestar can help draft a watertight constitution or Articles of Association that clearly outlines your NPO's objectives, governance structure, and operational framework.

  • Ensuring Compliance:  We can guide you through the legalities of the registration process and ensure all documents meet regulatory requirements.

  • Navigating Bureaucracy:  We can handle communication with the Companies Registry and Inland Revenue Department, streamlining the process.

  • Tax Implications: Bestar can advise on potential tax exemptions for NPOs and ensure you comply with relevant tax filing procedures.

  • Ongoing Support: We can provide ongoing advice on governance best practices, legal obligations, and future considerations.

Overall, Bestar can save you time, effort, and potential headaches by ensuring your NPO is established correctly and operates compliantly from the outset.

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